We use cookies to improve your website experience. To learn about our use of cookies and how you can manage your cookie settings, please see our Cookie Policy. By continuing to use the website, you consent to our use of cookies. Close


Lloyd's Law Reporter


[2019] SGHC 143, Singapore High Court, Belinda Ang Saw Ean J, 4 June 2019

Contracts – Bills of lading – Contracting and performing carrier – Tort – Negligence – Duty of care between registered owner and sub-charterer – Implied contract of carriage – Cargo operations – Cargo claims – Damage to cargo and vessel

The plaintiff, Wilmar, a commodities trader, had as buyer entered into three sale contracts for various palm oil products free on board (FOB) Indonesian ports. It nominated the carrying vessel Bum Chin , a Hong Kong flag oil/chemical tanker, for the shipment of a consignment of palm oil products to be loaded at Kuala Tanjung terminal in Indonesia for carriage to Jeddah and Adabiyah. The defendant, Heroic Warrior Inc, was the registered owner of the vessel. There was no charterparty between the parties; instead the plaintiff was nominated as charterer by a contractual sub-charterer. No bill of lading was issued. An incident on board Bum Chin on 17 April 2013 caused physical damage to the vessel and loss of and damage to the palm oil consignment. The plaintiff arranged for a substitute vessel to transport the palm oil purchased under the sale contracts. The plaintiff claimed damages on the grounds of contract and negligence, asserting that the defendant as contracting carrier failed in its duty to ensure that the vessel was seaworthy; and that the defendant, through its servants or agents, had failed to take reasonable care of the cargo. A key contention was that tank 4S was not cargo-worthy. The defendant counterclaimed against the plaintiff for the cost of repairs to Bum Chin , asserting that the plaintiff is responsible for the damage sustained by Bum Chin because the terminal involved in the loading of the cargo was acting as the plaintiff’s agent and the terminal had improperly performed its part of the cargo operations.

The rest of this document is only available to i-law.com online subscribers.

If you are already a subscriber, please enter your details below to log in.

Enter your email address to log in as a user on your corporate account.
Remember me on this computer

Not yet an i-law subscriber?


Request a trial Find out more