Terms & Policies Ahlmark lines

Bill of lading terms

General bill of lading terms and conditions

Wherever the term "Merchant" occurs in the bill of lading, it shall be deemed to include the shipper, the consignee, the holder of the bill of lading, the receiver and the owner of the goods.

1. Paramount clause

This Bill of Lading incorporates the provisions of the Swedish Maritime Code giving effect to the so called Hague-Visby Rules, contained in the Brussels Convention of August 25, 1924, as amended by Protocol dated Brussels February 23, 1968. If anything herein contained be inconsistent with the statutory enactment of the Hague-Visby Rules made applicable by this clause, it shall to the extent of such inconsistency, but no further, be null and void.

2. Jurisdiction

Any claim against the Carrier arising under this Bill of Lading shall be decided according to Swedish law, except as provided elsewhere herein, and in the Swedish Courts, to the jurisdiction of which the Carrier submit himself.

3. Period of responsibility

The Carrier shall not be liable for loss of or damage to or delay to the goods arising before the time when the goods are loaded on board or after the time they are discharged from the ship.

4. The scope of voyage

The contract is for liner service and includes departures from the direct and immediate transport and all of the following are included in the contract voyage. The voyage shall include usual or customary or advertised ports of call, whether named in this contract or not, also ports in or out of the advertised, geographical, usual or ordinary route or order, even though in proceeding thereto the vessel may sail beyond the port of discharge or in a direction contrary thereto, or depart, from the direct or customary route. The vessel may call at any port for the purposes of the current voyage or of a prior or subsequent voyage. The vessel may proceed backwards or forwards, may omit calling at any port or ports, whether scheduled or not, and may call at the same port more than once; may, either with or whithout the goods on board, and before or after proceeding towards the port of discharge, adjust compasses, dry-dock, go on ways or to repair yards, shift berths, take fuel or stores, embark or disembark passengers, crew, workmen or other persons, remain in port, sail without pilots, tow and be towed, and save or attempt to save life or property.

5. Delay

Except as compulsorily provided for in the Swedish Maritime Code regarding delay to goods, the Carrier shall not be liable for delay howsoever caused.

6. Containers

The Carrier shall be entitled to carry goods in containers or similiar articles of transport on deck. The Carrier´s liability for such cargo shall be governed by the Hague-Visby Rules as defined above.

7. Live animals

The Carrier shall not be liable for injury to or illness or mortality or loss of live animals, howsoever caused, not for delay with regard to such carriage.

8. Deck cargo

In respect of deck cargo - except as cargo referred to in clause 6 above - The Carrier has no obligation specially to equip the vessel for the reception, carriage and preservation of such cargo and has no responsibility for loss or damage which may be attributable to the carriage on deck. The burden of proving negligance on the part of the Carrier shall be on the Merchant. In no case the responsibility of the Carrier shall exceed his responsibility for ordinary cargo according to this Bill of Lading.

9. Refrigerated cargo

The Carrier has no responsibility whatsoever for the functioning of reefer containers or trailers, not owned nor leased by he Carrier.

10. Substitution of vessel, transshipment through cargo and forwarding

The Carrier may carry the goods to their destination by the vessel named herein or other vessel or vessels either belonging to the Carrier or other persons or companies, or by land or air transport, proceeding either directly or indirectly, and may carry the goods or part of them beyond their destination and may transship, land and store the goods either on shore or afloat and reship or forward the same at Carrier´s expense but at Merchant´s risk, also may convey the goods in lighters to and from the vessel at Merchant´s risk. In all cases of transshipment, forwarding, re-shipment or storage, the Carrier acts as agent for the Merchant only, and is authorized to accept the terms of any warehouseman or carrier, even although less favorable to the Merchant than those contained in this Bill of Lading. If it is stated in this Bill of Lading or otherwise agreed that the carriage or a define part of it shall be performed by someone other than the contracting Carrier, the latter shall not be liable for any loss, damage or delay howsoever caused while the goods are not in his custody. The Carrier may delay forwarding awaiting a vessel or conveyance in his own service or with which he has established connections.

11. Option

The port of discharge for optional goods must be declared to the vessel's Agents at the first of the optional ports named in the option not later than 48 hours before the vessel's arrival there, or failing such declaration the Carrier may elect to discharge at the first or any optional port and the contract of carriage shall then be considered fullfilled. Any option must be for the total quantity of goods under this Bill of Lading.

12. Notification

Any clause herein giving names of parties who desire to be notified of the vessel's arrival at destination is solely for the information on the vessel's Agents and failure to notify shall not involve the Carrier in any responsibility, or relieve the Merchant from any obligation hereunder.

13. Loading, discharge and delivery of goods

Notwithstanding any custom of the port to the contrary, all the goods under this contract must be ready for loading alongside the vessel, as soon as the vessel arrives. Loading shall take place as fast as the vessel is able to load, by day and - if required by the Carrier - also by night, Sundays and holidays. The Carrier is entitled to load and stow the goods or to appoint a person for the loading and stowing of the goods. If goods contracted for shipment are not available, when the vessel is ready to load, the Carrier is relieved any obligation to load such goods, and the vessel may leave the port without further notice and deadfreight is to be paid. The Carrier is entitled to land and receive the goods or to appoint a person or corporation for the landing and reception of the goods. Whether appointed by the Carrier or not, anybody so acting is the Merchant's representative and the Merchant shall pay current charges whether delivery is taken overside or on quay. The Merchant must be ready to take delivery of the goods as soon as the vessel is ready to unload and as fast as she is able to discharge, by day and - if required by the Carrier - also by night, Sundays and holidays, notwithstanding any custom of the port to the contrary. Discharge may commence without previous notice. Landing, storing and delivery shall be for the Merchant's acount. Single pieces or packages, exceeding 3 tons gross weight, shall pay all costs for cranage as well as extra charges in accordance with tariff rates for loading, handling, transhipping and discharging. If the goods are not taken by the Merchant at the time when the vessel is entitled to call upon him to take delivery, or if they are not removed from alongside the vessel without delay, the Carrier shall be liberty at the sole risk and expense of the Merchant to enter the goods, to move them, to land them on to wharf, quay or into warehouse or to discharge them into craft or hulk and/or sell them with or without legal authority, and the contract of carriage shall be considered as fullfilled. The Merchant shall accept this portion of unidentified or loose goods. Notwithstanding any custom of the port to the contrary whether before loading or in connection with transshipment or discharge, is at the risk and expense of the goods even though arranged for by the Carrier or his agents. Should the goods be refused exportation or importation by any government or authority or by anybody purporting to act with the authority of any government or authority or should the goods in the Carrier's opinion be in such condition that he considers it advisable to discharge, transship, return, remove or destroy them, then he shall be entitled to do so at any port or place. In such case the Merchant shall bear the risk for the goods and the costs directly or indirectly incurred. If delay is caused to the vessel for any reason whatsoever, the Merchant shall pay demurrage per day or pro rata for portion of a day and time to count from ship's arrival whether in berth or not.

14. Freight and charges

a/ Freight to be paid in cash without discount. Freight whether prepayable or payable at destination (collect freight) and whether paid or not to be considered as earned upon loading and not to be returned, vessel and/or goods lost or not lost.

b/ The goods shall be liable for all expenses of sorting, mending, cooperage, bailing or reconditioning of goods and/or packages, replacing of receptacles and/or packages containing the goods and gathering of loose cargo and/or contents of packages.

c/ Goods once shipped cannot be taken away by the Merchant except upon Carrier's consent and againts payment of full freight and compensation for any damages sustained by the Carrier through such taking away.  

d/ All dues, taxes and charges, including expenses for fumigation and extra crane charges, whether general or local, levied on the vessel, that under any denomination may now exist or in future be established, are to be paid by the Merchant.

e/ The Merchant shall reimburse the Carrier for any increase of war risk insurance premium and war risk increase of the wages of the Master, officers and/or crew and for any payment, expense, fine, due , duty, tax, impost, loss, damage or detention sustained or incurred by or levied upon the Carrier or the ship in connection with the goods, howsoever caused. The Merchant shall compensate the Carrier for any increase of the cost for bunkers and for deviation and delay in connection with bunkering howsoever caused.

f/ For the purpose of ascertaining the correctness of the declaration of contents, insurance premium, weights, measurements or value of the goods the Carrier reserves the right to have the contents inspected and the weight, measurement and/or value verified. If on such inspection it is found that this declaration is not correct the Carrier is entitled to claim compensation for his inspection costs and double the amount of freight which would have been due, if such details had been correctly given.

15. Lien

The Carrier shall have a lien for any amount due under this or any other contract and for costs of recovering same and shall be entitled to sell the goods privately or by auction to cover any claims. If, on a sale of the goods, the proceeds fail to cover the amount due and the costs and expenses incurred, the Carrier shall be entitled to recover the difference from the Merchant.

16. General average and salvage

General average to be adjusted at any port or place at Carrier's option and to be settled according to the York-Antwerp Rules 1974. For this purpose the Merchant is bound to declare, if required, the value of the goods. Such deposit as the Carrier or his Agent, without prejudice, may deem sufficient to cover the estimated contribution of the goods and any special charges thereon shall, if required, be paid to the Carrier or his Agent prior to delivery and will be placed on trust account in bank in joint name of the Carrier and of trustee for the Merchant. Should the goods have been delivered to the Merchant without security as above, such contribution nevertheless to be paid by the Merchant within 90 days upon notice from the Carrier of his intention to declare general average. In the event of accident danger, damage or disaster before or after commencement of the voyage resulting from any cause whatsoever, whether due to negligence or not, for which or for the consequence of which the Carrier is not responsible by statue, contract or otherwise, the Merchant shall contribute with the Carrier in General Average to the payment of any sacrifice, losses or expenses of a General Average nature that may be made or incurred, and shall pay salvage and special charges incurred in respect of the goods. If a salving vessel is owned or operated by the Carrier, salvage shall be paid for as fully as if the salving vessel or vessels belonged to strangers.

17. Both-to-blame collision clause

(This clause to remain in effect even if unenforcible in the Courts of the United States of America). If the vessel comes into collision with another vessel as a result of the negligence of the other vessel and of any act, neglect or default of the Master, Mariner, Pilot or the servants of the Carrier in the navigation or in the management of the vessels, the Merchant will idemnify the Carrier against all loss or liability to the other or non-carrying vessel or her Owner in so far as such loss or liability represents loss of or damage to or any claim whatsoever of the Merchant paid or payable by the other or non-carrying vessels or her Owner to the Merchant and set-off, recouped or recovered by the other or non-carrying vessel or her Owner as part of his claim against the carrying vessel or Carrier. The foregoing provisions shall also apply where the Owner, operator or those in charge of any vessel or vessels or objects other than, or in addition to, the colliding vessels or objects are at fault in respect of a collision or contact.

18. Government directions, war, epidemics, ice, strike, congestion etc

a/ The Master and the Carrier shall have liberty to comply with any orders, directions or recommendation as to loading, routes, port af call, stoppages, destination, arrival, discharge, delivery or in any otherwise whatsoever given by any government or any person or body acting or purporting to fact with the authority of such government or by any committee or person having under the terms of the insurance on the vessel the right to give any orders, directions or recommendations.

b/ In any situation whatsoever and wheresoever occuring and whether existing or anticipated before commencement of or during the voyage, which in the judgement of the Carrier or the Master is likely to give rise to risk of capture, seizure, detention, damage, delay or disadvantage to or loss of the vessel or any part of her cargo, to make it unsafe, imprudent, or unlawful for any reason to proceed to the loading port or the usual or agreed place of loading in such port or to commence or proceed on or continue the voyage or to enter or discharge the goods at the port of discharge, or to give to delay or difficulty in arriving, discharging at or leaving the port of discharge or the usual or agreed place of discharge in such port: the Carrier or the Master may before loading cancel the contract of carriage and-if loading has already commenced-proceed with such cargo taken onboard; or, if the goods have been loaded, the vessel, whether or not proceeding towards or entering or attempting to enter the port of discharge or reaching or attempting to reach the usual place of discharge therein or attempting to discharge the goods there, may remain at or proceed or return, directly or indirectly, to or stop at any port or place whatsoever, as the Master or the Carrier may consider safe or advisable under the circumstances, or the vessel may retain the goods on board until the return trip or until such time as the Carrier or the Master thinks advisable, and the goods, or any part thereof, may be discharged at any such port or place; or the Carrier or the Master may forward the goods as provided elsewhere herein at the risk and expense of the goods.

c/ The Carrier or the Master is not required to give notice of discharge of the goods or the forwarding thereof as herein provided.

d/ When the goods are discharged from the ship, as herein provided, they shall be at their own risk and expense; such discharge shall constitute complete delivery and performance under this contract and the Carrier shall be free from any further responsibility.

e/ For any services rendered to the goods as herein above provided, the Carrier shall be entitled to a reasonable compensation.

f/ In the event of any detention to the vessel due to any of the aforementioned causes, the Carrier to be entitled to demurrage per day or pro rata for portion of a day.

19. Baltic conference ice premium clause 1947

Any premium for insurance of the vessel against ice risk shall be borne by the Merchant.

20. Holland and Belgium

The Merchant by accepting this Bill of Lading expressly waives and renounces Article 700 of the Netherland's Code and the Belgian Commercial Code, Part II, Art. 148 and agrees that damage to and expenses and sacrifices incurred by the vessel, even if caused by the inherent vice or unseaworthiness of the vessel, or by fault or neglect of the Master or Crew, shall be considered as matters of General Average and shall be contributed to by the Merchant accordingly.

21. Belgian ports

Notwithstanding, whatever else herein provided, even in the Paramount and Jurisdiction Clauses, it is expressly agreed that any dispute arising under this Bill of Lading and relating to goods loaded in or destined to Belgian Ports, shall, depending on the nationality of the Carrier, be submitted to the Court of Gothenburg and that exclusively all the terms, provisions, conditions and interpretations of Art. 91 of the Belgian Code de Commerce shall be applied by this Court.

22. French ports

Merchants to pay surtax on cargo for French ports.

23. Antwerp

Cargo for Antwerp to be landed and received by the Corporation appointed by the agents of the vessel, consignees paying current charges whether delivery is taken overside or on the quay.


All Spanish Taxes on Freight and Cargo, including "Impuesto General sobre el Tráfico de las Empresas" as well as the G-3 Tariff Dues to be for Charteres' Account.

Goods of dangerous or damaging nature must not be tendered for shipment unless written notice of their nature and the name and address of the sender have been previously given to the carrier, master or agent of the vessel and the nature is distinctly marked on the outside of the package or packages as required by statue. A special sowage order giving consent to shipment must also be obtained from the carrier. Any lift weighing over two tons gross must be declared in writing before shipment and the weight must be stencilled clearly on the package.