Liner Trading

Rare for ships involved in complex liner trading to be managed by independent management companies and an in-house management department will have a separate section devoted to monitoring the calculation and collection of freights. Tramp freights where the Operations Department has a vital role to play. The importance of understanding when and where freight is to be paid and monitoring that charterers comply with the agreement, cannot be overstated. The considerable sums of money are the very life blood of the ship’s existence. Choose for yourself any reports in the shipping press of chartering fixtures of vessels in the ‘Panamax’ range and do your own calculations. It will not be difficult to find instances where the loss of interest alone on a delayed freight payment could be running at the rate of over $10 per hour. The freight will become payable in a manner which will be spelt out in the Charter party. Typical examples are: Fully prepaid on or within a specified number of days of signing Bills of Lading. Proportionally prepaid (usually 90% or 95%) within a specified number of days of signing Bills of Lading. Before breaking bulk (i.e. before the commencement of discharge). On ‘right and true delivery’. Any balances are settled with the demurrage / despatch. Deadfreight arises when the charterer fails to load the full amount contracted under the charterparty and is the agreed freight on the missing tonnage less any expenses which the owner would otherwise have had to pay on that quantity. Such expenses include stevedoring (if that is for ship’s account) or port costs (if they are levied on cargo quantity). In voyage charters, charterers are given a specific time, ‘laytime’, in which to effect the loading and discharging operations. Laytime, which like the freight is fully negotiable, can either be expressed as a certain number of days or an undertaking to load/discharge at the rate of so many tons per day.