ENS hosts Nautical Institute Command seminar cocktail function

ENS Shipping & Logistics department recently sponsored and hosted at our Cape Town offices the opening networking cocktail party on the eve of the Nautical Institute's first Command Seminar in Southern Africa, which was attended by over 100 delegates from the region and further afield.

ENS's Michael Tucker welcomed delegates to Cape Town and commended the branch organising committee on the relevance of the programme content. This included a keynote address by the Deputy Minister of Transport, who spoke about the challenges facing the South African maritime industry, highlighting the fact that as South Africa is a regional market for Southern Africa, the development of a significant transhipment hub and a more effective logistics network is critical.

During the seminar, ENS's Tony Norton presented an insightful paper on the challenges of rebuilding the South African Ships' Register and the legislative reforms necessary to attract foreign shipowners.

ENS's Kate Pitman interviewed by Lawyer Monthly Magazine

Kate Pitman had this to say about the state of the shipping industry and bankruptcies: view article

costs of South African security arrest proceedings recovered on the basis that they are claimable as damages in London arbitration

In terms of section 5(3) of the South African Admiralty Jurisdiction Regulation Act, claimants who are either contemplating or embroiled in arbitration proceedings elsewhere than in South Africa may arrest property belonging to the debtor, or an associated ship, for purposes of obtaining security for an award.

On instructions of an English solicitor, ENS recently procured an order for the arrest of a ship for purposes of obtaining security for contemplated London arbitration proceedings in respect of a claim for the balance of unpaid hire, as well as for the costs of the South African security arrest proceedings on the basis that the costs so incurred in South Africa were claimable as damages in the arbitration reference.

The order was not challenged and the claims in respect of which security was sought, including the claim for the costs of the South African proceedings, were paid in full by the recalcitrant debtor upon service of the arrest order on the ship.

inter-club New York Produce Exchange Agreement 1996 (as amended September 2011)

The judgments of the Durban High Court in the matters of the The Gallant II and The Cargo Explorer have previously precluded would-be claimants from obtaining security in South Africa for cargo claims as contemplated in the Inter-Club New York Produce Exchange Agreement, 1996 (and Inter-Club Agreement 1984) on the basis that the applicant would not be able to demonstrate that it had an existing claim or cause of action as required by section 5(3) of the South African Admiralty Jurisdiction Regulation Act.

The September 2011 amendment introduces an entitlement to acceptable security from the other party to the charter party regardless of whether a right to apportionment between the parties to the charter party has arisen under the Agreement. The amendment gives rise to interesting theoretical and thought-provoking practical considerations in relation to the obtaining of security in respect of indemnity claims under South African law.

For advice on the enforcement in South Africa of an order made by an arbitration tribunal in terms of clause 9 of the ICA and on the question of whether the September amendment will now permit the arrest in terms of section 5(3) of the South African Admiralty Jurisdiction Regulation Act of property belonging to the other party to the charter party, or an associated ship, please contact any member of the department.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.