A burning question that is circulating currently in the container industry is whether the Tare Weight of a container should be included in the weight shown in the Bill of Lading or not and whether the SOLAS VGM should match the Bill of Lading weight..
Misdeclaration in weight or misdeclaration of hazardous content has been the bane of the shipping industry and the carriers who have suffered several consequences due to misdeclarations..
When such misdeclarations are done, it does not just affect the ship, the carrier involved and the person who chose to misdeclare their cargo.. These misdeclarations result in cargo damage and affect everyone else’s cargo, especially when entire ships are lost..
Millions of dollars worth of goods and assets are lost due to this, not to mention the huge impact on the environment and the loss of life (human or otherwise)..
IMO and other stakeholders took these misdeclarations seriously and SOLAS VGM came into effect.. Life after SOLAS VGM seems to be hunky dory and no major incidents have been reported in relation to weight misdeclarations..
However, the recent spate of maritime disasters is causing some worries to the container lines.. Having had first-hand experience with such misdeclarations and maritime disasters, the world’s largest container line – Maersk Line – has put its foot down on these misdeclared cargoes..
In any trade transaction, there are two parties – the buyer and the seller.. When it comes to a sea freight shipment, either one or both of them may end up paying different sets of charges to different entities..
Not just for newcomers to the business of exporting and importing, this question sometimes perplexes many already in the business..
In this article I dissect this process to explain who pays what charges in sea freight shipment..
So who pays what charges in a sea freight shipment..??