Fixing letter. As soon as the negotiations about the chartering of a vessel have resulted in the "fixture" of a ship, a "fixing letter" may be drawn up containing a summary of the main terms and conditions of the charterparty.

FCL (Full container load). This expression refers to a consignment from a shipper which will occupy the entire container. The freight rates are generally lower for FCL shipments compared to LCL or “Less than container load” (i.e., break bulk cargo) that has to be loaded into a container.

 

Fines. Imposed on the owner for breach by his servants of regulations such as immigration, customs, smuggling by crew members, pollution. Fines for overloading are specifically excluded.

 

Firm For Reply or Firm for Immediate Reply. During chartering negotiations, telexes and similar messages are transmitted by one parry's brokers to brokers for the other party using introductoryterminology such as these terms. In chartering practice, such terminology has become common and acceptable to most, if not all, shipping professionals.

 

Fully declared. This is a floating policy in which the total of the amounts reaches the agreed limit. The floating policy comes to an end when it is fully declared.

 

Forum clause. This phrase can be applied to a clause in the charterparty which provides for the place where and the legal system under which any disputes will be decided.

 

Fake bills of lading. Some fraudsters are capable of forging bills of lading using high quality colour photocopiers that can reproduce even the printed logo of the earner. These fake bills of lading are usually used in persuading buyers or banks to pay for non-existent cargo. This practice can be prevented if the innocent parties check the name and movements of the vessel named on the bill of lading.

 

Fighting ship. When liner conferences are faced with severe competition from outsiders, the members of the conference may agree to use additional vessels or sailings at very low freight rates.

FIATA Bill of Lading. FIATA is the acronym for the International Federation of Forwarding Agents Associations and is based in Zurich, Switzerland.

First refusal. In negotiating for the fixture of a vessel a shipowner's shipbroker may attempt to obtain a FIRM OFFER from the charterer or the charterer's agents within a stated time limit.

Free alongside (FAS). If a charterparty provides for delivery of cargo "free alongside", it is up to the shippers to arrange for delivery of the goods within reach of ship's tackle (cargo handling equipment) unless the custom of the port provides otherwise. In some ports the meaning of this expression may be different. Shippers have fulfilled their obligation if they have arranged for delivery of the goods on pan of the wharf although beyond reach of ship's tackle.

Full knowledge of the local practice is therefore essential.

 

False date on the bill of lading. The contract of sale between the buyer and seller may impose a condition whereby the goods must be shipped and “onboard, shipped bills of lading” obtained by a certain date.

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