- Infospectrum collaboration enhances Baltic Exchange members’ risk assessment capability
The Baltic Exchange and leading global maritime counterparty risk analysis company Infospectrum have announced a collaboration that will see Infospectrum become the exclusive counterparty intelligence provider for the Baltic Exchange.
The partnership will allow the Baltic Exchange to carry-out more detailed background checks of entities seeking to join the Exchange. It will also provide Baltic Exchange members with a means of sourcing business/company information, counterparty intelligence and credit reporting/credit ratings on their business partners.
Members will be encouraged to draw upon Infospectrum’s market intelligence developed by its global team of risk analysts and consultants in the UK, the US, Singapore, Australia and Colombia. Information will also be used to support the Baltic Exchange’s dispute resolution service, reducing time and costs allocated to this complex area.
Mark Jackson, CEO, Baltic Exchange, commented: “This is part of the Baltic Exchange’s drive to add value to Baltic membership. We want the wider commodity and financial communities to understand that Baltic Exchange member firms adhere to a strict code of conduct based on the principles of honesty and ethical trading, with access to impartial information from Infospectrum, a recognised and respected intelligence provider.”
Panos Panousis, Managing Director, Infospectrum, added: “We’re delighted to be collaborating so closely with the Baltic Exchange. Greater transparency, and an improved understanding of the risks of our complex sector, benefits individual companies and the shipping industry as a whole. Our team of experts will help to speed up and enhance the Baltic’s new member onboarding process, identify whether or not a company is a Baltic Exchange member in our reports and provide business intelligence to the Baltic Exchange.”
- Marine art exhibition at the Baltic Exchange
Over the next few weeks, members and friends are invited to visit the Baltic Exchange bar, where a hand-picked selection of the The Royal Society of Marine Artists (RSMA) annual exhibition, in association with the Mall Gallery, can be viewed.
The work on show includes a painting by David Atkins, the recipient of the new Baltic Exchange Award. David was presented the award for his piece ‘The Sea at Portland Bill’. The work was painted on a stormy autumn day in the autumn.
Discussing the painting, David revealed that “as the light of day was slowly fading, the lamp of the lighthouse switched on. Its warning light was the last mark I made to the painting.”
Anna Bromwich, Art Consultant at Mall Galleries said:
“Generations of artists have sought inspiration from the sea and that tradition continues today. Each year The Royal Society of Marine Artists Annual Exhibition features works by RSMA members and a new generation of artists who have discovered the fascination of the sea.”
According to Anna Bromwich, the common theme for the exhibition is the sea and tidal waters although, within that remit, work is wide and varied.
“Subjects range from deep water shipping to coastal scenes, competitive sailing to quiet harbours, marine wildlife to still-life. Some specialise in carefully researched historical paintings; others paint en plein air, attempting to capture the essence of the scene at a particular moment in time; yet others work in their studio from copious notes and sketches made on location. The work is representational in the broadest sense and includes all the usual media: oil, watercolour, acrylic, pastel, pencil, pen and ink, as well as prints and the occasional sculpture.”
The RSMA was founded in 1939 and is widely recognised as the focal point for much of Britain’s finest contemporary marine art and many of the country’s leading marine artists are elected members of the Society. All work is for sale and Mall Galleries and the RMSA can also help commission marine art.
Those interested in viewing the rest of the exhibition can find out more here.
Those interested in making an enquiry regarding any of the paintings on the walls, please contact Anna Bromwich
- Join SGX Commodity Seminar in London
Singapore Exchange (SGX) will be hosting a Trading Opportunities in Commodity Derivatives seminar on 30 October at the Baltic Exchange. With a special focus on shipping and iron ore, the two hour event will feature speakers looking at the near term outlook for dry bulk markets; FFAs and how to understand global trends through shipping and machine learning.
Date: 30 October 2018
Venue: The Baltic Exchange
Dress code: Smart casual
Programme 1100 Opening address Calum Austin, SGX Commodity Derivatives 1110 Trading opportunities in SGX Commodity Derivatives
– Freight derivatives – the relationship with global-macro
– Volatility trading opportunities – comparison and analysis with financial products
– How to set up for FFA trading
Calum Austin, SGX Commodity Derivatives 1130 Dry bulk markets: near term outlook – Factors that impacted 2017/18 coal prices
– Potential short term price drivers
– Coal near term outlook
– Seaborne coking trade
– Seaborne iron ore trade & demand for high grade ore
– Steel prices and steel capacity utilisation
– Factors impacting capesize rates in 2017 & 2018
Vishal Thiruvedula, Refinitiv 1150 Trading FFAs for hedging & speculation John B, CEO FIS and Chairman of FFABA 1220
Reading global trends via shipping & machine learning
– Understanding the correlation between economics & freight rates
– Seeing the connections between commodity price & freight rates
– Trade dynamics as a function of bulk shipping – examples from coal, soybean and crude oil markets
– What can we learn about shipping and the macro environment by applying AI and machine learning?
IHS Markit 1300
- Sulphur Cap 2020 working groups
The Baltic Exchange is engaging with its membership to ensure that the widest possible input from the industry is received ahead of Sulphur Cap 2020. Engagement has taken place through the various Advisory Councils and also at forums where the Baltic has spoken this year. This feedback will be presented at two working groups, to which members are invited.
Working group meetings will take place at the SGX Centre, Singapore, 15 November, 3.30pm-6pm and at the Barbican in London, 22 November, 2pm-5pm. Places at both events are limited and are exclusive to Baltic members.
We would encourage those interested in attending to register at the appropriate link below as soon as possible:
- Hamburg Maritime Symposium
Covering FFAs, big data, liner shipping mergers and the implications for Europe of China’s One Belt and One Road, the Hamburg Maritime Management Symposium on 8 November is set to be a thought-provoking evening. Organised by the University of Hamburg and supported by the Baltic Exchange, this year’s line-up features an interesting range of speakers and topics.
- Prof. Nikos Nomikos, Cass Business School
- Prof. Qing Liu, Hamburg University
- Anthony Humberston, Senior Freight Analyst, Oldendorff Carriers
- Dr. Jan-Hendrik Hübner, Global Head of Shipping Advisory, DNV GL
- Thomas Mazur, Partner Restructuring Services, Deloitte
- Dr. Arnt Vespermann, CEO, Hamburg Süd
Click here for further details.
- Remembrance Day Service
Members and friends are invited to attend the Baltic Exchange on 9 November for this year’s Remembrance Day service. Those interested are invited to join us from 1045.
The Service takes place at the War Memorial in the lobby area. Coffee and biscuits from 1030 for 1045 service.
Royal British Legion poppies will be available in the Foyer and in the Bar.
Please contact Nick Pentreath if you are able to help with the following:
- The ‘Street Collection’ for the Poppy Appeal (25 Oct-9 Nov) in or near St. Mary Axe before work or at lunchtime –This would add greatly to our collection total
- If anyone plays brass/wind instrument (Grade 2/3) or drums/percussion and would like to join the band for the service
Corporate donations to The Poppy Appeal most welcome.
ACCOUNT: RBL POPPY APPEAL
SORT CODE: 30 11 75 (Lloyds)
ACCOUNT NUMBER: 01937121
Nick Pentrweath, Capricorn Shipbroking
Tel. 0207 283 7975
- Reasonable salvage: an Australian perspective
It is not often that an Australian court considers as many maritime law issues as examined in the recent Federal Court judgment, Mount Isa Mines Ltd v The Ship “THOR COMMANDER”  FCA 1326. The judgment is particularly noteworthy because it is the second of only two Australian authorities which consider common law salvage. In this article we examine the Federal Court’s approach to proving reasonableness of the salvage settlement.
Notably, the case highlights the importance of obtaining Australian law advice and to be aware that Australian law may not always conform with the approach taken by English law. Relevantly, Australian law has departed from the approach taken by the English Court of Appeal as to ‘proof of the reasonableness of a settlement’ with a third party.
Background to the case
In January 2015, the Thor Commander suffered a major engine breakdown in close proximity to the Great Barrier Reef. The vessel owner, MarShip, arranged for a tug to tow the vessel to safety, however there was uncertainty as to whether the tug would arrive before prevailing weather conditions might cause the vessel to ground on the Reef.
Following a request by AMSA seeking assistance for a distressed ship, a capsize vessel Xinfa Hai came to tow the vessel to safety. Relevantly, the Court determined that the Xinfa Hai did perform salvage services and its owners were entitled to a salvage reward. The Court also held it was MarShip’s breach that led to the circumstances requiring the salvage services. There was also no salvage contract or any other contractual relationship between MarShip and the Xinfa Hai.
At the time of the casualty, the vessel was carrying altonorte copper anodes owned by Mount Isa Mines. The cargo was worth just over $63 million and represented around 90% of the salved property. Mount Isa and its insurers agreed to pay the salvors $1 million to settle the salvage claim against the cargo interests. The settlement was concluded without MarShip’s input. Mount Isa then sought to recover the settlement sum as damages from MarShip in an action for breach of the contract of carriage. MarShip contended the settlement was unreasonable.
The Court’s approach to reasonableness
In determining whether the settlement was reasonable, the Court applied the ordinary principles of causation and remoteness. Mount Isa had the onus of proving that, objectively, the settlement was reasonable. Interestingly, the Court found Mount Isa did not act reasonably because (1) those acting for Mount Isa unreasonably failed to obtain any advice from Australian lawyers about the reasonableness of the settlement before it was made, and (2) Mount Isa failed to explain how it decided on the $1 million sum.
The Court accepted that Mount Isa was entitled to enter a commercial settlement to avert legal costs. The Court also appreciated that MarShip had been “quite cagey” and had declined to provide documents or statements to Mount Isa. Therefore the Court rejected any assertion that Mount Isa should have obtained more information upon which to negotiate a settlement. The information Mount Isa had obtained from the salvors, AMSA and pursuant to a freedom of information request, was sufficient.
The Court was critical of the reliance Mount Isa’s insurers placed on an advice which overstated the ship would have ‘undoubtedly’ grounded on the reef if assistance had not been provided. However, this was not of itself sufficient to find the settlement was unreasonable, as the erroneous advice was counterbalanced by other information, indicating the danger of grounding was significant enough to require assistance.
Mount Isa had also obtained advice from an Australian senior counsel, who opined that the provision of towage would likely be found to be in the nature of salvage operations, for which there was a real risk that Mount Isa would have to pay a salvage reward. Importantly however, senior counsel said he was not expressing any opinion on the likely amount of that reward, except that he expected it would be more than the equivalent of a commercial charge for towage, but towards the lower end of the scale.
What was unreasonable?
The Court held that Mount Isa failed to explain how it decided on the settlement sum. To some degree Mount Isa’s English lawyers obtained insight into the approach an Australian Court might take by reading United Salvage. They considered what the salvage reward might be if fixed using the same percentages in United Salvage, but accepted the factual scenario differed. They also referred to ‘criteria to be applied in the assessment of a salvage award,’ but without explanation.
There was no evidence Mount Isa’s English lawyers were aware of the requirements of Australian law, to prove the reasonableness of a settlement as against a person (such as MarShip) who was not a party to the settlement. Critically, in Unity Insurance Brokers, the High Court departed from the approach previously taken by the English Court of Appeal, finding that where a settlement is made in reliance of legal advice, the evidence of the legal advisors is vital. This is because the risks involved in the litigation and the reasoning which led to the settlement are factors that will determine whether or not the settlement was reasonable.
Justice Rares was critical of the English lawyers, stating they “never took the simple common sense course of seeking advice from Australian lawyers as to…the range within which Mount Isa could expect a salvage award to be made by an Australian court, or…what Mount Isa would need to do to prove that any settlement for which it claimed damages against MarShip would, or could be found to be recoverable as damages in this proceeding”.
The Court’s approach to proving reasonableness of a settlement with a third party is not only relevant to maritime law. Any person considering a settlement with a third party, with the intention of seeking to recover that sum as damages in Australia from another person not a party to that settlement, should ensure they obtain Australian law advice. That legal advice should set out clear reasoning to support both the considerations made to enter the settlement and the range within which settlement is recommended. As the advice may need to be produced in court to prove the reasonableness of a settlement, it should be written with this purpose in mind and separated from any other advice over which privilege is to be maintained.
Kirsten James is an associate at HFW, based in the Sydney office. She can be contacted on T +61 (0)2 9320 4600 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Ship Finance Executive, 5-6 November, London
Spaces are still available on the Baltic Exchange’s Ship Finance Executive training course takes place in London on 5-6 November.
The course aims to raise awareness of the substantial benefits and risks of equity and debt finance to shipping companies looking for capital and to investors looking at shipping as a market with increasing accessibility and potentially strong returns on investment.
Using a variety of real-life examples, course participants will learn how an IPO is made, what to look for when choosing an underwriter, how to identify an underpriced IPO before it is made public using only publically available information, how to issue a high-yield bond and how to calculate the probability a high-yield bond will default.
To find out more, or to register, email email@example.com.
- Baltic Quiz Night: 22 November
This year’s Baltic Quiz Night takes place on 22 November. Teams of six are invited to enter for the chance to win the Charles Macmillan Cup, points towards the David Bradley Inter-Sport Cup as well as more prizes to be confirmed!
Pictures from last year’s quiz can be found here.
- Baltic Wine Society: Who is telling the truth?
Sommelier, David Hughes, returns to the Baltic on 31 October with two fellow wine buffs for the latest Baltic Wine Society tasting.
This time, however, attendees will have to work out which expert is truthfully describing each wine and who is bluffing!
In addition, paintings from the finalists and winners of the Royal Society of Marine Arts Exhibition will be on display for guests to enjoy.
To register, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
£15 for members, £20 for non-members (prices exclude VAT).
- Retired Members lunch photos now available
Photos from the Retired Members lunch that took place earlier this month are now available to view here.
- Member update: 24 October
The following individuals have applied for Membership under an existing member company:
Company Individual Macquarie Bank International Ltd Ms E Schnedler-Pedersen Braemar ACM Shipbroking Ltd Mr T Simmonds
Pacific Carriers Limited, PCL Tankers Pte Ltd
Mr K Ang
Any comments should be passed to Karen Karanicholas by 31 October 2018.
- Office for rent, Croydon (UK)
Baltic member Shearwater Shipping and Chartering has office space in its building available to rent.
The space is a modern, top floor office, freshly decorated and refurbished. Other shipping companies are invited to take the space, which is available now, and located at: 43 Friends Road, Croydon, Surrey, CR0 1ED.
- Approx 1000 sq feet/93sq m.
- Very close to East Croydon station.
- Companies with less than 12 employees enjoy favourable council/business rates.
- 15 minutes from East Croydon station to London Bridge or Victoria.
Interested parties should contact David Beckett at Shearwater Shipping and Chartering.
Office: +44 (0) 20 8688 2020 / Mobile: +44 (0) 7831 235 001