Ethiopian law permits the creation of pledgs of personal property. There is neither a generalised writing requirement, nor a registration requirement for the perfection of a pledge.
However, there are a number of points on which Ethiopian secured transactions law might benefit from reform.
First, it is impossible to create a security interest in future property under Ethiopian law. Mortgages and pledges alike both require that the debtor have a present interest in the property; it would be insufficient even if the debtor eventually acquires an interest in the property.
Second, the law on creating security by way of assignment appears to be uncertain. There do not appear to be clear provisions governing this form of security, even to guarantee its validity.
Third, there does not appear to be a centralised register of personal property security in Ethiopia.
Stebek, Abdo & Burayu, ‘Property Rights Protection and Private Sector Development in Ethiopia’ (Ethiopian Chamber of Commerce, December 2013) <http://www.ethiopianchamber.com/Data/Sites/1/psd-hub-publications/property-rights-protection-2014-for-print.pdf> accessed 6 November 2016.
World Bank, ‘Ease of Doing Business in Ethiopia – Getting Credit’ (2016) <http://www.doingbusiness.org/data/exploreeconomies/ethiopia/#getting-credit> accessed 6 November 2016.