A set of explanatory notes has been issued following the recent publication of the BIMCO Anti-Corruption Clause for Charter Parties (See “BIMCO launches anti-corruption clause for shipping contracts worldwide”).
The notes are a useful reference for users providing a detailed explanation of the thinking behind each of the six sub-clauses and how they are intended to work in practice.
The Anti-Corruption Clause provides market users with a regime for responding to unlawful demands for gifts in cash or kind, such as cigarettes or alcohol.
The Clause can be used in voyage and time charter parties. It sets out in a series of steps a process for the contracting parties to work together to resist such demands.
If the measures fail, however, the owners’ rights to hire or uninterrupted lay-time and demurrage are protected. Termination, by either party, is the ultimate sanction under the Clause. A high threshold has been set so that the termination provisions cannot be easily used as an exit from an inconvenient charter.
The use of the Clause is optional – owners and charterers can agree when fixing whether they wish to include the anti-corruption clause.