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General information

Because of great expense entailed in the purchase and maintenance of sea ships, exporting manufacturers do not always have a fleet of their own. Instead, they have to charter (hire) vessels, as a rule, on the long-term basis from independent companies. In certain cases, companies with a fleet of their own will solicit services of shipping companies.

To optimize the search for a ship, exporters resort to services of a charter broker , who knows the ins and outs of the charter market and can promptly find vessels meeting the needs of the exporter.

What exporter should know

Shipping operations offered can be, depending on the service rendered to the consigner, of two kinds: linear and tramp.

Linear shipping is carried out between a number of given ports, with the times of vessels entering them known well in advance. Relatively small batches of various goods are accepted from all kinds of consigners, who pay at fixed rates. Should those rates be changed, the linear company will usually make this known beforehand. Compared to the tariffs of tramp shipping, the rates fluctuate more seldom and within a smaller range. Linear shipping is largely used for transporting various container cargos.

Tramp delivery is based, as a rule, on dispatching homogeneous cargos. Here, it is the charter conditions that dictates the timing of shipments, the ports of loading/unloading and charter rates. Deliveries where volumes differ from voyage to voyage are normally done in this way.

Maritime transportation markets are shaped by the needs for such services. Demand itself is as varied as goods, navigation areas, etc.

As linear shipments call for certain conditions to be fulfilled, and for a new route to be opened, formalities must be settled with the Department of Maritime and River Transport, we will focus here on tramp deliveries.

The owners of tramp vessels can see their services fulfilled in every direction of maritime navigation, i.e. in all markets. Apart from consigners and manufacturers, linear shipment companies turn to such services as well. This happens when extra needs are expected to those for linear deliveries. Thus, in a way, tramp fleet is backup to intraproduction and linear shipment.

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Basic information that a broker should know

Below is the list of information that an exporter has to give to a broker:

  1. Name of goods, their brief description and characteristics (stowage factor, length, weight of a product unit, danger factors).
  2. Quantity of goods.
  3. Port of loading/unlo ading.
  4. Summary of transport cond itions of the sale-purchase contract.
  5. Loading/unloading rates.
  6. Time of bringing the ship to (L/C).
  7. Estimate of charter tariffs (if any).
  8. Charterer’s details (company’s nam e, full address, telex, e-mail, telephones).
  9. Previous ship charters.

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