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Press Article: Can a shipowner claim damages in addition to demurrage?

03 November 2020

Can an owner claim damages in addition to demurrage? In K Line Pte Ltd v Priminds Shipping (HK) Co Ltd (The Eternal Bliss) [2020] EWHC 2373 (Comm), the English court resolved a long-standing debated issue in favour of the owners.

In June 2015, the Eternal Bliss (the ship) was nominated under a Contract of Affreightment for the carriage of a consignment of soya beans from Brazil to China. The contract was on an amended Norgrain charterparty form.

Clause 19 (the demurrage clause) was amended to read as follows:
"Demurrage at loading and/or discharging ports, if incurred, to be declared by Owners upon vessel nomination but maximum USD 20,000 per day or pro rata / despatch half demurrage laytime saved at both ends. for part of a day and shall be paid by Charterers in respect of loading port(s) and by Charterers in respect of discharging port(s). Despatch money to be paid by Owners at half the demurrage rate for all laytime saved at loading and/or discharging ports. Any time lost for which Charterers/Receivers are responsible, which is not excepted under this Charter Party, shall count as laytime, until same has been expired, thence time on demurrage."

The full article is available in Maritime Risk International's October issue, page 16-17, linked on the right, and on the MRI website here.