No Contracting State shall be required to extend the benefit [...] for
a continuous period exceeding one year.
This literally and clearly implies that the convention applies for a minimum time frame of 1 year, and that there's no obligation to extend that benefit to a longer period.
This sentence does not set any LIMIT as A.f.M. argues. A.f.M. says, in this chatroom:
If somebody tells you, "Don't stay in the water longer than one hour,"
will you be penalized for leaving the water in 59 minutes time or
Showing that he cannot understand English. To mirror his paraphrasing of the treaty, this would be the correct example:
The lifeguard is not bound to allow you to stay in the water any longer than 1 year.
Clearly implying that you shall be allowed to stay for at least 1 year.
Hence, the treaty does set a REQUIREMENT of 1 year.
But 1 year starting from which event? I would argue since the issuing of the international driving permit, considering that the issuing country will usually only extend a 12 months period of validity to the document anyways.
A more relaxed interpretation could be 1 year from the date of entry.
Both BC and AB are blatantly violating article 1 of the 1949 Geneva Convention on international road traffic.
Furthermore, article 24 states that:
- Each Contracting State shall allow any driver admitted to its territory who fulfils the conditions which are set out in Annex 8 and who holds a valid driving permit issued to him, after he has given proof of his competence, by the competent authority of another Contracting State or subdivision thereof, or by an Association duly empowered by such authority, to drive on its roads without further examination motor vehicles of the category or categories defined in Annexes 9 and 10 for which the permit has been issued.
- The international driving permit shall, after the driver has given proof of his competence, be delivered by the competent authority of a Contracting State or subdivision thereof, or by a duly authorised Association, and sealed or stamped by such authority or Association. The holder shall be entitled to drive in all Contracting States without further examination motor vehicles coming within the categories for which the permit has been issued.
This one leaves no space to fantastic interpretations. The holder of the driving permit shall be allowed to drive without further examination (during the validity of the permit).
BC will require people from many countries, among which countries that also subscribed the convention alongside Canada, like Italy as an example, to retake both the knowledge and practical tests before issuing a local license.
Both BC and AB are blatantly violating article 24 of the 1949 Geneva Convention on international road traffic.
To address the concerns of those who commented here that a driver whose license was revoked in BC or abroad could use her/his international permit with impunity: the 4th and 5th paragraphs of article 24 has provisions for dealing with such cases.
The right to use the domestic as well as the international driving permit may be refused if it is evident that the conditions of issue
are no longer fulfilled.
A Contracting State or a subdivision thereof may withdraw from the driver the right to use either of the abovementioned permits only if
the driver has committed a driving offence of such a nature as would
entail the forfeiture of his driving permit under the legislation and
regulations of that Contracting State. In such an event, the
Contracting State or subdivision thereof withdrawing the use of the
permit may withdraw and retain the permit until the period of the
withdrawal of use expires or until the holder leaves the territory of
that Contracting State, whichever is the earlier, and may record such
withdrawal of use on the permit and communicate the name and address
of the driver to the authority which issued the permit.
For example it could be put into law that if your driving record doesn't satisfy certain criteria your driving permit can be confiscated.
Adding to the confusion, Canada:
- has programs that allow visitors to stay for 1 year. These visitors pay taxes but are excluded from most services that residents have access to, such as healthcare and welfare.
- BC allows visitors to drive for up to 6 months, but without a local license they cannot get car insurance or plates. Meaning that they would only be allowed to drive rentals.
- AB allows visitors to drive for up to 12 months, in theory. I'm not clear whether they're allowed to have plates or not.
- requires you to be a resident to obtain a local driving license (which btw is an involved process that requires certified translations, tests, fees, and the destruction of the original license)
- tragically, is built for cars