Electronic bills of lading – can it happen?

The wonders of electronic technology have dynamically entered every aspect of our lives. Shipping has seen a shift in operational modalities. New on-board systems, emails between ships and on-shore offices, and on-board mobile phones with myriad applications are only a few examples of enabling technology.

Bills of Lading, Practice and Policy

Limitation funds: the end of cash?

Court of Appeal accepts that a limitation fund can be constituted by a letter of guarantee

Practice and Policy

Insurance Contract Law Draft Bill

The Law Commission has produced its first concrete proposals on business insurance contract law in the form of a consultation on a partial draft Bill. The Bill is a mixed bag of early sketches and satisfying solutions and almost the only thing that can be said with certainty is that it is incomplete. The proposals also cover marine insurance and indeed significant modifications are made to the Marine Insurance Act 1906. The consultation closed on 21 February 2014.

Practice and Policy

A heavy price paid for notice of refusal under UCP600

The Hong Kong case Swiss Singapore Overseas Enterprises Pte Ltd v China CITIC Bank Corporation Ltd [2013] HKCFI 1291; [2014] 1 HKC 96, issued on 14 August 2013 and reported recently, concerned a claim under a documentary credit, raising issues of notice of refusal under the UCP600, preclusion, variation and estoppel.

Trade, Sale of Goods, Contracts, Practice and Policy

Pyrrhic victory: undoing the law on damages

Flame SA v Glory Wealth Shipping Pte Ltd (The Glory Wealth) [2013] EWHC 3153 (Comm) is yet another shipping dispute arising from the collapse in the market in the wake of the financial crisis. This short commentary is focused solely on certain aspects related to the assessment of damages for wrongful repudiation of the contract of affreightment (COA) concluded by the parties.

Carriage of Goods, Contracts

Manzi and Another v Capitaneria di Porto di Genova (The “MSC Orchestra”) Case C-537/11

Air pollution from ships – Maximum fuel sulphur content – Passenger ships operating regular services – Cruise ships – Directive 1999/32/EC – MARPOL Convention 73/78 and 1997 Protocol

Pollution & Salvage, Practice and Policy, Regulation

Law Commissions’ reform proposals on marine and commercial insurance – “yay” or “nay”?

In April 2013, a symposium organised by the Institute of International Shipping and Trade Law, Swansea University, on the recent Law Commissions’ reform proposals on business insurance, shed some light on the views of the main stakeholders in the market, and what direction the Law Commissions are likely to take.

Commercial, Insurance, Regulation

P&I Clubs and competition law

In August 2010 (IP/10/1072), the Commission initiated a market investigation with shipowners, brokers and commercial insurers on the basis of Regulation (EC) No 1/2003 and Commission Regulation (EC) No 773/2004. The object of scrutiny of the investigation were certain provisions accompanying claim-sharing and joint reinsurance agreements of P&I Clubs in the marine insurance sector.

Insurance, Regulation

Mar-Train Heavy Haulage Ltd v Shipping.Dk Chartering A/S (t/a Franck & Tobiesen A/S) and Others [2014] EWHC 355 (Comm)

Subcontracting jurisdiction

Freight forwarding framework agreement – Subcontractors – Agency – Unilateral consent to jurisdiction – Brussels I Regulation (EC) No 44/2001, article 23

Contracts, Practice and Policy, Jurisdiction, Regulation

Glencore Energy UK Ltd v Cirrus Oil Services Ltd [2014] EWHC 87 (Comm)

Sale of goods – Contract formation – “Firm offer” – Email responding “good news”

Sale of Goods, Contracts

Stellar Ocean Transport LLC v Owners and/or Demise Charterers of the Ship or Vessel “Ruby Star” [2014] HKCFI 121

Admiralty practice – Application for judgment in default – Failure to acknowledge service – Application to set aside – Jurisdiction in rem

Practice and Policy