Ship Agents & Chartering
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Ship owners, charterers or operators may commission us to undertake the agency of any type vessel at the Cyprus ports such as bulk carriers, tankers, product carriers or passenger vessels.
The primary objective here being the quick and safe loading or unloading of the vessel.
Supplementary services are carried out including the supply of fuel, providing husbandry services, crew changes, technical supplies, implementing instructions on behalf of the owners or the charterers.
A related but separate activity is chartering. Due to our link with a network of owners, and brokers, we are in a position to provide you with suitable vessels upon request at competitive fixing terms. This calls for great flexibility, constant awareness and fast adoption to charging demands.
A shipping agency is the designation for a person or agency responsible for handling shipments and cargo at ports and harbours worldwide on behalf of shipping companies. In some parts of the world, these agents are referred to as port agents or cargo brokers. There are several categories of shipping agents such as: port agents, liner agents and own agencies, each rendering specific services depending on the shipping company they represent.
Shipping agents will quietly and efficiently take care of all the regular routine tasks of a shipping company. They ensure that essential supplies, crew transfers, customs documentation and waste declarations are all arranged with the port authorities without delay. Quite often, they also provide the shipping company with updates and reports on activities at the destination port so that shipping companies have up-to-the minute information available to them at all times while goods are in transit.
Tasks and responsibilities
Succinctly, the term shipping agent refers to the relationship between the principal (in this case the shipping company conveying the goods) and its representative, whereby the principal, expressly or impliedly, authorises the agent to work under his control and on his behalf.
The responsibilities/competencies as well as the remuneration of the agent may be explicitly entered into a contract which has been concluded between himself and the ship owner. This practice is very common in the cargo trade.
The duties of a shipping agent are very variable and depend mainly on the type of services rendered. Some duties will be the same for both cargo and liner services such as the duties with regard to the agency or dispatch of the vessel, but other duties will be typical to the liner or cargo trade, for example by ensuring that there is enough cargo in the port of call (this is called acquisition). Because of the great diversity of his duties, the shipping agent, within the framework of his responsibilities/competencies, often performs the tasks and duties of other intermediaries such as chartering brokers (or cargo brokers), booking agents, etc.
The duties of a cargo broker are similar to those of a shipping agent, but may also vary. For example, a cargo broker will also book outward cargo and inform the shippers on which quay and when the goods are to be presented and when loading and unloading is due to start. He will draw up booking lists according to the incoming bookings and esnure that the manifest department collects the shipping documents (shipping permits, bills of lading) which are necessary to commence the loading and unloading operations. The collected documents are also compared with the booking lists.
Responsibilities of shipping agents include:
- ensuring a berth for the incoming vessel
- arranging for the pilot and the tugs if necessary
- drawing up the documents for the customs and harbour services
- assisting the master in making the necessary contacts with the local authorities and the harbour authorities
- arranging for the necessary ship provisions
- arranging for storage bunkers if these are needed
- arranging for the necessary repairs
- conveying instructions to and from the ship owner
- organising the supply, transport and the handling of the goods
- organising the necessary contacts with the stevedores
- collecting freights, cargoes
- contacting shippers and the receivers of the goods
In the case of damage to cargo or the ship, the shipping agent also makes the necessary arrangements (at the request of the ship's master or owner) with the insurance company, and for nautical inspections and the services of experts or surveyors, etc
- The specific tasks of a cargo broker or port agent include:
- Providing the necessary information concerning the freight rates and the publication of the sailing lists
- Looking for cargo via notices and sailing lists
- Booking of cargo and the conclusion of the agreements
- Drawing up, initiating and delivering the required documents (booking lists, shipping permits, delivery orders) related to the cargo
- Contacting the shippers/forwarders with regard to the deliveries for shipment
- Fulfilling the necessary formalities regarding the delivery and reception of the goods (customs etc.)
- Settling cargo claims with insurance companies