Nick Fell, BW Group, Chairperson of BIMCO’s Documentary Committee

Looking back at BIMCO’s Contracts & Clauses work in 2023

Published: 18 December 2023

An extremely productive 2023 and a big agenda in place for 2024

By Nick Fell, Chairperson of the Documentary Committee

As I reflect on our journey since the summer break, I'm proud that we’ve achieved so much (see, for example, the list of published contracts and clauses at the end of this note). As we continue to form new subcommittees to embark on more projects in our main pillars of decarbonisation, alternative fuels and offshore energy, we’ve also been able to find time to work on other projects such as quiet enjoyment letters.

I'm pleased that our team has made such significant progress and that our outlook for 2024 perfectly encapsulates those key goals, while also setting aside resources for the continuation and initiation of other work such as:

  • Third-party ship management agreements
  • Wreck removal agreements
  • A light revision of RECYCLECON to reflect the Hong Kong Convention entering into force.

We've established a subcommittee for the Methanol Annex and Biofuel Clause. The increasing dialogue around alternative fuels has prompted several newbuildings to be equipped with engines that can run on methanol or ammonia. The new subcommittee will develop a Methanol Annex, akin to the LNG Annex developed based on the well-known BIMCO Bunker Terms 2018. The subcommittee is also considering biofuels which are a short-term solution, despite the known challenges of supply constraints and costs. The subcommittee work includes deciding on whether to just provide some guidance on this, or whether the industry would prefer an actual clause that allows charterers to supply biofuels.

This subcommittee is composed of Kane Limbrick from A.P. Moller-Maersk, Jussi Vaahtikari from ESL Shipping, Andrew Hoare from Fortescue, Robert Crees from World Kinect Corporation, Elizabeth Sloane from Stephenson Harwood, Rishi Choudhury from Britannia P&I and Gudrun Janssens from BIMCO. It is led by Natalie Wong and Carl Lindahl.

Additionally, we've established a FuelEU Maritime and Dual-fuel Clause subcommittee. In anticipation of FuelEU Maritime coming into effect on 1 January 2025, this subcommittee is exploring how to address the fuel requirements and the voluntary pooling mechanism that will come into force. They will look into the need for a clause that addresses dual-fuel supply to the ship, which could be beneficial given the expected increase in dual fuel engines.

This subcommittee includes Juan Fernández-Ricoy from Empresa Naviera Elcano, Thomas Pierru and Tiphaine Angla from CMA CGM, Pernille Palmelund Sørensen from the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping, Alexander Doijer from ACT Commodities, Antonia Panayides from Reed Smith, Eleni Antoniadou from Gard P&I and Gudrun Janssens from BIMCO. It is also led by Natalie and Carl.

And as I write, we are close to finalising the establishment of subcommittees for WINDSEACON and the CO2 Charter Party, and we have put together a new subcommittee to develop the Data Sharing/Energy Efficiency Performance and Retrofit Cost/Benefit Sharing Clauses. They will hold their first subcommittee meeting on 9 January.

This subcommittee includes Sanjay Relan from Pacific Basin, Mattias Kjellberg from Stena Rederi, Ann Shazell and Keith Dawe from Cargill, Giannis Webster from Costamare, Heather Johnson from Chevron, Joanna Meadows from Skuld and Helen Barden from NorthStandard. It is led by Carl Lindahl and Christian Hoppe.

Around the time of the year end or early next year, we aim to have finalised and published the following:

  • QELs, subject to online adoption
  • Dynamic Positioning Annex to SUPPLYTIME.

So looking back, it's been a highly productive year, but our journey doesn't stop here. We've many exciting projects lined up for the future, and I look forward to sharing these developments with you as we progress.

Thank you for your continued support and dedication to BIMCO.

Best wishes for the holiday season and for 2024,

Nick Fell

Chairperson of the BIMCO Documentary Committee

Contracts and Clauses published in 2023


Russian Oil Price Cap Scheme Clause

LNG Bunker Annex, an annex to the widely-used BIMCO Bunker Terms 2018

Ship Sales Further Trading Clause 2023

CII Clause for Voyage Charter Parties 2023


Three standard ETSA clauses for Voyage Charter Parties

ETS – SHIPMAN Emission Trading Scheme Allowances Clause 2023

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