On 25 October 2022, BIMCO published an updated version of the GENCON charter party, the GENCON 2022. GENCON has been one of the most used voyage charter party for dry bulk cargo trade worldwide. The previous version of the charterparty dates back to 1994 from BIMCO. This article will briefly deal with the most important changes that have been introduced.
BIMCO has amended several key clauses and made the charter party more comprehensive to reduce the need for additional clauses. Furthermore, the new version seeks to address gaps by inserting wording and structure on matters which we previously let to the parties or resolved in litigation. This version also attempts to ensure that the contract is more in line with the current regulatory framework and commercial practices.
A number of the main changes are listed herebelow:
Owners’ Responsibility (Clause 2):
- Clause 2 has been extensively rewritten, and provides the Owner with the option to invoke all the defenses that are available under the Hague-Visby Rules along with the responsibilities thereto.
- Clause 2 includes a definition of when the due diligence obligation should be performed by the Owner, i.e., at the commencement of each voyage and loading cargo at each port. This adds to the continuous obligation to carry and care for the cargo until its discharge.
Cargo and Charterers’ Responsibility (Clause 3):
- Provides for the Charterer’s responsibility to make sure the cargo is properly described, packed, loaded and stowed, with strict adherence with the law and conventions applicable, as well as an ongoing duty of compliance.
- Charterer shall be responsible for the cargo (bulk) damage, unless caused by an act or omission of the Owners or their servants, agents or subcontractors.
Responsibility regarding Loading and Discharging (Clause 4):
- Charterers will bear the risk and expense to load, tally, stow, trim and/or secure the cargo, subject to the supervision of the Master (which may affect the division of responsibility).
- The Charterers are to be responsible for stevedores damages caused to the vessel.
Laytime and Demurrage:
- Clauses 9 through 13 provide a detailed definition regarding the notice of readiness and when it has to be tendered and on what basis laytime and demurrage are to be calculated.
General Exceptions (Clause 18):
- A new general exception clause has been incorporated, which provides immunities for the Charterer, the Owner or the respective agents from the damages that may occur from events as mentioned in the clause, subjected to conditions thereto.
- A dual remedy is available for the Owners in case the Charterer fails to make payment. Aside from exercising a lien, the Owners have the right to suspend performance and terminate the charter if certain conditions are met. (Clause 15 and 16)
- As per clause 26, agents, whilst appointed and paid by the Owners, shall be considered to be acting on behalf of the Charterer when it comes to matters concerning. In this respect it is important to note that each party is responsible for the act or omission of their servants, agents and subcontractors.
For a complete copy of the GENCON 2022, the explanatory notes and additional BIMCO resources on the use of the new GENCON, we refer our members to the BIMCO website:
In the event of any specification questions or comments we invite our Members to contact NNPC through firstname.lastname@example.org.