Piracy clause amended

Intertanko has amended its model piracy clause to take into account security issues specific to the Gulf of Guinea.

The new amendments seek to address the risk owners face when a vessel is waiting outside a port before being allocated a berth to discharge or load cargo.

The amendments by Intertanko’s documentary committee, which apply to time and voyage charter parties, now give shipowners a choice of waiting place.

“If the customary anchorage is not safe the vessel may wait somewhere else e.g. several miles off port limits drifting out of range of pirates,” the clause now reads.

“If an owner does this, any notice of readiness (NOR) will be given from that waiting place and time for the purposes of laytime and demurrage will run from that point. No further NOR would be required.”

Charterers will be obliged to pay owners additional freight calculated at the demurrage rate for all time spent as a consequence of exercising the right to wait further offshore, together with the cost of all additional bunkers, insurance premiums, and crew or other costs incurred as a result of actual or threatened piracy.

Intertanko considers that the remainder of its existing model piracy clauses is sufficiently robust to cover other piracy issues relating to the Gulf of Guinea including the provision of additional insurances.

West African piracy made up 19% of attacks worldwide last year, according to figures from the International Maritime Bureau (IMB).

Nigerian pirates and armed robbers accounted for 31 of the region’s 51 attacks, taking 49 people hostage and kidnapping 36, more than in any year since 2008.

Nigerian pirates ventured far into waters off Gabon, Ivory Coast and Togo, where they were linked with at least five of the region’s seven reported vessel hijackings.

On Wednesday a Dynacom Tankers vessel was reported missing off Angola in a move security experts believe represents a significant extension of maritime crime emanating from the Gulf of Guinea region.

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