Difference between Master and House Bill of Lading

A Bill of Lading maybe issued as a House Bill of Lading or a Master Bill of Lading.

A House Bill of Lading (HBL) is issued by an NVOCC operator, or a Freight Forwarder to their customers.

A Master Bill of Lading (MBL) is issued by the Shipping Line (Carrier) to the NVOCC Operator, or Freight Forwarder.

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VGM Declaration – Verified Gross Mass – SOLAS

Misdeclaration of cargo weight is a major hazard which often results in cargo claims, structural damages to vessels and also poses a significant risk to the lives of staff.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has amended the SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) convention under regulation 2 of chapter VI which mandates the declaration of the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) of a packed container before loading on board vessels within a prescribed cut-off date / time to the shipping line and / or port terminal authorities.

Effective July 1, 2016, SOLAS regulations for weighing containers allow two ways for weighing packed containers in order to obtain the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) for each container by the shipper:

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Spotlight on Bill of Lading

Are you a new exporter looking for a primer on bills of lading? Or maybe you’re at the opposite end of the spectrum—a seasoned professional seeking a reference or training tool.

Either way, this guide is for you! We’ll explain, in simple terms, three things you need to know about the bill of lading form.

1. What Is a Bill of Lading?

A bill of lading is a contract between you, the owner of the goods, and the carrier stating what goods you’re shipping, where the shipment is coming from, and where it’s headed. It also serves as a receipt issued by the carrier once your shipment is picked up.

A bill of lading (or a waybill) can also serve as a document of title, which allows the person holding it to claim possession of your shipment. There are several specific bills of lading, which we’ll discuss in detail below.

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Understanding the 3 New Ocean Carrier Shipping Alliances

Learn How the New Carrier Alliances Affect Your Ocean Freight Contracts and/or Shipments.

The new ocean carrier shipping alliances are fully operational as of April 2017. These 3 carrier alliances represent nearly 80% of global container trade and roughly 90% of container capacity on major trade routes. The main trade lane that is highly affected by this change and the main reason for the new alliances is the North America-Asia a.k.a. “East-West” trade lane between the Far East and North America which will represent 96% of East-West trade. This post is focused more on the trade routes that related to North America.

If you employ an NVOCC or international freight forwarder to handle your ocean freight, or negotiate your carrier contracts on your behalf, this information will be useful in your decision making.

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Japanese Carriers Merge into ONE, Ocean Network Express

Japan’s three major shipping lines announced plans to merge into a single, consolidated joint venture company; the timing, however, remains in question. “K” Line, MOL, and NYK Lines intended to establish the Ocean Network Express (ONE) by April of 2018, however U.S. ‘gun jumping’ laws may force a much sooner launch. Earlier this month, the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) rejected the carriers’ joint venture proposal, citing that the Shipping Act of 1984 does not provide the FMC with the authority to approve mergers. This ‘tripartite’ agreement included provisions to prematurely transfer U.S. marine terminal shares and ownership interest within the new entity, which would violate the sharing of competitive information; already a major concern since the dawn of shipping alliance and vessel sharing agreements (VSA). The ONE must turn to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission to render a verdict.
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Difference between Multimodal and Intermodal Shipping

First, let’s start off with a few definitions:
Multimodal: Multimodal transport (also known as combined transport) is the transportation of goods under a single contract, but performed with at least two different means of transport; the carrier is liable (in a legal sense) for the entire carriage, even though it is performed by several different modes of transport (by rail, sea and road, for example). The carrier does not have to possess all the means of transport and in practice usually does not; the carriage is often performed by sub-carriers (referred to in legal language as “actual carriers”). The carrier responsible for the entire carriage is referred to as a multimodal transport operator, or MTO.
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Differences between an International Freight Forwarder and an NVOCC

This post describes the main differences between an international freight forwarder and an NVOCC according to the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) of the United States. Most of the information in this post is taken from the FMC’s own website.

Ocean Transportation Intermediaries (OTIs) are either Ocean Freight Forwarders or Non-Vessel-Operating Common Carriers and are regulated by the FMC pursuant to the Shipping Act of 1984.

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What are Incoterms?

We’re going to take a look at Incoterms—what they are and how they originated. Next time, we’ll discuss how to apply Incoterms, how exporters benefit from them, and why they matter, so stay tuned!

What are Incoterms, and who uses them?
International Commercial Terms are the official International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) rules that explain trade terms. They are a voluntary, authoritative, globally-accepted and adhered-to text for determining the responsibilities of buyers and sellers for the delivery of goods under sales contracts for domestic and international trade. Incoterms closely correspond to the U.N. Convention on Contracts for the International Sales of Goods. Incoterms are known and implemented by all major trading nations.
Incoterms are only part of the whole export contract. They don’t say anything about the price to be paid or the method of payment that is used in the transaction. Furthermore, Incoterms don’t deal with the transfer of ownership of the goods, breach of contract, or product liability; all of these issues need to be considered in the contract of sale. Also, Incoterms can’t override any mandatory laws.

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