Contract Of Affreightment


In the maritime context, a Contract of Affreightment (COA) is a legal agreement between a shipowner and a charterer, where the shipowner agrees to transport a specified quantity of cargo from one place to another over a given period of time, or over several voyages, in a specified vessel or vessels. The charterer does not have to hire the whole vessel but can reserve a certain amount of cargo space. The terms and conditions of the contract, including the freight rate, the ports of loading and discharge, the type of cargo, and the duration of the contract, are all negotiated and agreed upon by both parties. The COA is a flexible contract that allows the charterer to plan their cargo movements while providing the shipowner with a steady stream of income. It is commonly used in bulk shipping for commodities such as coal, grain, and iron ore. The shipowner is responsible for the seaworthiness of the vessel and for delivering the cargo within the agreed time frame, while the charterer is responsible for providing the cargo and for loading and discharging it.


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