BIMCO Publishes First IMO 2020 Clauses

Monday December 10, 2018

Following last month's approval process, BIMCO today has published its first two IMO 2020 related bunker clauses.

BIMCO 2020 Marine Sulphur Content Clause for Time Charter Parties and BIMCO 2020 Fuel Transition Clause for Time Charter Parties are now available on the BIMCO website.

The 2020 Marine Fuel Sulphur Content Clause replaces the BIMCO Fuel Sulphur Content Clause 2005 as part of BIMCO's Suite of Standard Bunker Clauses.

"By making the 2020 Marine Fuel Sulphur Content Clause part of the Suite of Standard Bunker Clauses, it means that we have been able to keep the revised clause short and simple. It is written as a straightforward compliance provision with the sulphur content requirements of MARPOL Annex VI," says Grant Hunter, BIMCO head of Contracts & Clauses.

In contrast, the Transition clause is designed to deal with one-off events related to the start of IMO 2020.

"The clause is designed to provide a fair allocation of responsibilities and liabilities between the owners and charterers in managing remaining stocks of fuel that will become non-compliant under MARPOL from 1 January 2020," says BIMCO.

As has been previously discussed, the IMO 2020 transition will present a host of unique issues, such as the need to remove non-compliant fuel and clean bunker tanks.

BIMCO says the clause has been specifically designed for time charter parties that will span the January 1, 2020 start date of the new sulfur cap.

"We would also recommend incorporating the clause into time charter parties with redelivery very close to 1 January 2020 where delays or extensions might result in the ship redelivering after the date the change comes into force," Hunter adds.