The subject vessel was chartered on an ASBATANKVOY charter party for carrying gasoil 0.5% and MOGAS 93 RON from Mailiao, Taiwan to Singapore.
Clause 8 of the rider clauses provided any dispute up to USD 50,000.00 shall be referred to a sole arbitrator in London under the LMAA SCP. Any disputes over the above amount shall be subject to the jurisdiction of the English High Court.
The owner’s claim was for USD 76,472.50 but took a commercial decision to reduce it to USD 50,000.00, thereby bringing themselves within the fiscal limits of the LMAA SCP. Since the parties could not agree on an arbitrator, their solicitors made an application to the President of the LMAA, who appointed [X] as sole arbitrator.
On 20 August, the arbitrator informed the charterers of his appointment and advised them to serve defence and counterclaim (if any) submissions by 17 September. Charterers did not respond.
On 18 September, upon an application from the owners’ solicitors, the arbitrator made a final and peremptory order for charterers to serve their defence together with any counterclaim by 25 September, failing which he would proceed to an Award on the documents and submissions presently before him. Again, the charterers did not respond.
Notwithstanding the charterer’s failure to respond and participate in the proceedings, the arbitrator’s duty was to consider the documents and calculations accompanying the owners’ submissions before issuing any Award.
laytime and demurrage calculations
The charter party terms relevant to the issue in the arbitration were clauses 6 “Notice of Readiness”, 7. “HOURS FOR LOADING AND DISCHARGING”, 8. DEMURRAGE” and 11. “HOSES: MOORING AT SEA TERMINALS”.
Notice of Readiness tendered at 10.24 on 5 November.
Vessel made ‘all fast’ at 1136 on 7 November. The delay in berthing was caused by reasons for which the vessel was not responsible.
Loading of the parcel of MOGAS 93 RON commenced later that day at 15.00, with hoses being disconnected after the completion of loading at 15.48 on 8 November. Loading of the other parcel of Gasoil commenced at 17.06 on 7 November, with hoses being disconnected at 06.24 on 9 November.
Owners submitted that laytime commenced at 16.24 on 5 November and, having made some allowances for bad weather at 50%, the used laytime amounted to 63 hours 48 minutes.
Notice of Readiness tendered at 09.30 on 14 November. She made ‘all fast’ at 14.48 on 17 November, discharge commenced at 16.42 and hoses were disconnected after the completion of discharge at 13.42 on 18 November.
Owners submitted that laytime calculation showed a time used in Singapore of 92 hours 36 minutes having allowed for shifting time from anchorage to berth to be excluded.
The owners’ demurrage claim was fully supported, and, on the evidence, the facts as alleged by the owners were correct. Therefore, they had a clear entitlement to demurrage. Since the owners took a commercial decision to reduce their claim to US$50,000.00, the tribunal awarded that sum in full.
Owners were awarded interest with commencement date 18 December, being 30 days after the completion of discharge. As the owners were successful, they were awarded their costs together with the costs of this Award.
Final Award, 30 September 2008.
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