The Global Shippers’ Forum (GSF) and BIMCO, the world’s largest shipping association, have released a jointly produced video to promote the benefits of using their “readymade” standard service contract, SERVICECON. The video is aimed primarily at small to medium sized shippers which may not have the resources to develop their own service agreement. It features GSF’s Chris Welsh and Marfret’s Erwann Merrien in discussion with Grant Hunter from BIMCO. All three were involved in the development of SERVICECON. They discuss the benefits of using SERVICECON from a shipper’s and a carrier’s viewpoint and highlight the key features of the contract. The video is available to watch free of charge from BIMCO’s and GSF’s websites.
According to Chris Welsh, Secretary General at the GSF, “SERVICECON has been written by a team of shippers and carriers – it’s a cross-industry initiative. It’s a simple, fair and easy to use readymade contract that covers all the main issues that need to be dealt with in a service agreement. It’s an ideal starting point for negotiations for any small to medium sized shipper.”
Erwann Merrien, General Counsel at Marseilles-based Marfret, added, “We have used SERVICECON ourselves. It really helps that the contract comes from two big representative organisations of shippers and carriers – that makes it much more acceptable to shippers. And it’s a really straightforward contract to use – it just has the basics of what’s needed.”
Grant Hunter, Head of Contracts and Clauses at BIMCO, commented: “BIMCO feels that there is real value for shippers and carriers in this collaboration with the GSF. There are a lot of unnecessarily long and overly detailed service contracts in circulation. SERVICECON provides a neutral starting point for negotiations – a fair and balanced contract stripped down to its bare bones. It’s a really big help for small to medium sized shippers when dealing with carriers.”