Voyage Charters

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Chapter 43


12. DUES – TAXES – WHARFAGE. The Charterer shall pay all taxes, dues and other charges on the cargo, including but not limited to Customs overtime on the cargo, Venezuelan Habilitation Tax, C.I.M. Taxes at Le Havre and Portuguese Imposto de Comercio Maritime. The Charterer shall also pay all taxes on freight at loading or discharging ports and any unusual taxes, assessments and governmental charges which are not presently in effect but which may be imposed in the future on the Vessel or freight. The Owner shall pay all dues and other charges on the Vessel (whether or not such dues or charges are assessed on the basis of quantity of cargo), including but not limited to French droits de quai and Spanish derramas taxes. The Vessel shall be free of charges for the use of any wharf, dock, place or mooring facility arranged by the Charterer for the purpose of loading or discharging cargo; however, the Owner shall be responsible for charges for such berth when used solely for Vessel’s purposes, such as awaiting Owner’s orders, tank cleaning, repairs, etc. before, during or after loading or discharging.


43.1 The effect of the clause is that charges on cargo and taxes on freight are for the account of the charterer, whereas charges for services provided to the vessel, such as quay or light dues are for the shipowner’s account, even if the amount charged depends on the quantity of cargo loaded or discharged, but subject to the important qualification that the charterer is liable for charges for the use of any wharf, dock, place or mooring facility arranged by the charterer for the purpose of loading or discharging cargo. Where the loading or discharging ports are to be nominated by the charterer the owner takes the risk, in the absence of contrary provision, that the charterer will nominate a port where the expenses falling upon the owner are unusually high.1 Worldscale rates are designed to take into account, inter alia, differences in the level of port charges at different ports.

Taxes on freight2

43.2 A tax which is nominally an income tax levied on the shipowner, but which is in reality simply a tax on freight, or a proportion of freight, falls within the meaning of this expression.

The Gunda Brovig was chartered on the Exxonvoy 69 form and loaded a cargo of oil in Iraq. Under Iraqi law an “income tax” was levied on export freight earnings, which operated by deeming 7.5

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per cent of the freight to be profit, and subjecting that “profit” to tax at an escalating rate depending upon the shipowners’ total export freight revenue.

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