1. How do I address MARPOL Annex VI Regulations 14.1, 14.3 and 18 compliance in my time charter?
Both BIMCO and INTERTANKO have produced Bunker 2020 Clauses that deal with MARPOL Annex VI Regulations 14.1, 14.3 and 18 compliance. These 2020 Clauses will also be relevant, as set out below, even where a scrubber is fitted, because both are based on meeting the Regulation 14 requirements of MARPOL Annex VI which can be achieved by using a scrubber. If the scrubber malfunctions then the ship may need to burn low sulphur fuel oil to comply with the 2020 limits.
Both clauses are equally valid and ready for use in time charters being negotiated now. Each has a different approach with the BIMCO 2020 Marine Fuel Sulphur Content Clause for Time Charter Parties addressing sulphur requirements as part of BIMCO’s Suite of Bunker Clauses for Time Charter Parties and the INTERTANKO Bunker Compliance Clause for Time Charterparties taking a more comprehensive ‘all in one’ approach.
2. Should I still use the BIMCO Bunker Fuel Sulphur Content Clause for Time Charter Parties 2005?
No. The BIMCO Fuel Sulphur Content Clause 2005 was developed in response to the introduction of Emission Control Areas (ECAs). The BIMCO 2020 Fuel Sulphur Content Clause replaces the BIMCO Fuel Sulphur Content Clause 2005. This new version of the clause addresses the global 0.50% m/m sulphur content regime that takes effect on 1 January 2020. The new version also covers operating in ECAs as well as in the current 3.50% m/m maximum fuel sulphur content regime. BIMCO recommends that you replace the BIMCO Fuel Sulphur Content Clause 2005 with the BIMCO 2020 Marine Fuel Sulphur Content Clause in all new charters.
3. Why do I need the BIMCO 2020 Marine Fuel Sulphur Content Clause for Time Charter Parties?
The BIMCO 2020 Marine Fuel Sulphur Content Clause is written as a simple, short and all-encompassing compliance provision covering the sulphur content requirements of MARPOL Annex VI. It also allocates responsibility for providing appropriate fuel under a time charter and contractual consequences of non-compliance. Although designed primarily for compliance with 0.50% m/m sulphur content marine fuels, the clause also provides for compliance when operating in ECAs and can help avoid disputes about who provides low sulphur fuel oil in the event of a scrubber breakdown or the non-availability of low sulphur fuel oil.
The BIMCO 2020 Marine Fuel Sulphur Content Clause for Time Charter Parties is designed to work together with existing time charter bunker clauses that already cover issues relating to the specifications, grades and quality/suitability of the fuel provided by charterers.
4. Do I need to add the BIMCO 2020 Fuel Transition Clause for Time Charter Parties?
No. It is not applicable to scrubber-fitted ships and does not need to be added to your time charter party. The Fuel Transition Clause is designed specifically for ships that are not fitted with scrubbers but are required to switch to 0.50% m/m sulphur content fuel oil latest by 1 January 2020.
5. Why do I need the INTERTANKO Bunker Compliance Clause for Time Charterparties?
INTERTANKO also has a clause available that covers compliance - the INTERTANKO Bunker Compliance Clause for Time Charterparties. It takes a broader approach to MARPOL Annex VI and other requirements and includes references to quality issues and industry best practice. It also covers speed and performance issues and fuel changeover, both of which are relevant to the use of 0.50% m/m sulphur content fuel oil as well as scrubbers. This has been produced as one clause because INTERTANKO does not have the equivalent to BIMCO’s suite of bunker clauses that addresses other key bunkering issues.