INTERTANKO’s Documentary Committee has completed its work on the INTERTANKO Bunker Compliance Clause for Time Charterparties. The full INTERTANKO Guidance – 2020 Bunker Clauses which incorporates the full text of the INTERTANKO Bunker Compliance Clause for Time Charterparties together with a Commentary and Q&A on 2020 Bunker Issues as they relate to chartering is now available for download here.
Members’ concerns on bunker supply post-2020 are wide-ranging and cover not only the 0.50% Sulphur Cap, which will come into force on 1 January 2020, but also other regulatory aspects contained in MARPOL Annex VI, SOLAS and other regulations.
The INTERTANKO Bunker Compliance Clause for Time Charterparties addresses additional concerns over ISO specification and compatibility issues. It also covers elements of best practice which are considered to be paramount in driving the quality of fuel supplied to the vessel, drawing both charterers and bunker suppliers into a responsible approach for fuel supply that is not only compliant with the legal regime but also practically fit for use.
Given that time charters under negotiation now may extend into 2020, the Clause also deals with transitional provisions. Owners and Charterers’ division of responsibility will differ depending on whether the vessel is redelivered end of 2019 or into 2020 and the Clause distinguishes between the two. It first ensures that a vessel redelivered end 2019 will be compliant ready for 1 January 2020. For those vessels redelivered after 31 December 2019 it divides responsibility for compliance in a balanced way between Owners and Charterers.
The Clause provides Owners and Charterers with a complete code to prepare their fixtures starting now and up to 2020 and beyond. Given the enormous difference in Vessels, trades and approach to fuel management, it is impossible to provide a ‘one size fits all’ approach. As a model Clause however, it gives Owners and Charterers the flexibility to adapt its provisions to suit their purposes. Members who already have Vessels on time charter that may extend into 2019 and 2020 may wish to seek to negotiate an Addendum to those fixtures to ensure that their Vessels will be compliant ready for 1 January 2020. The transitional Additional Provisions will fall away after 1 January 2020 and will be removed from circulation leaving Clauses 1.-3. in place to deal with supply of Compliant Bunkers going forward thereafter.
The Clause is ready for immediate use ahead of the implementation of the 0.50% Sulphur Cap on 1 January 2020 including if your fixture ends during 2019, late-2019 or going forward into 2020 and beyond. If there is any uncertainty as to the redelivery date, we recommend Owners and Charterers use the Clause in full.
Members’ attention is also drawn to the INTERTANKO MARPOL Annex VI Clause for Bunker Supply Contracts, also referred to in the new Guidance. This is relevant to 2020 Bunker Issues to ensure that bunker supply terms refer to the MARPOL Annex VI requirements. This is also relevant where Owners are stemming bunkers for their own account for voyage chartering.
Is there a charterparty clause for scubbers?
INTERTANKO's Documentary Committee has identified a number of operational issues that may benefit from inclusion in a time charterparty clause, including restrictions on the use of an open loop system in some ports; planned and unplanned maintenance and off hire; supply of raw materials required for scrubber operation in addition to HSFO and disposal of residues.
INTERTANKO is in dialogue with BIMCO to assess the industry need for a Scrubbers Clause for Time Charterparties and/or any related guidance. INTERTANKO would be pleased to hear from any Members or Associate Members with regard to scrubber issues for charterparties and any draft scrubber clauses that have been proposed for use.