10th Annual Colloquium of the IISTL - Another Resounding Success

10th Annual Colloquium of the IISTL - Another Resounding Success

The 10th Annual Colloquium of the Institute of International Shipping and Trade Law (IISTL) was held this year on 3-4 September. By tradition, each of these events puts a particular aspect of shipping or commercial law under a searching spotlight. On this occasion, the focus was on contemporary developments in shipbuilding, ship sale and vessel finance, areas of law that have changed an enormous amount and taken on an entirely new relevance since the commencement of the global economic downturn in 2008. Examples of fast-moving areas of law covered in the proceedings this year included the cancellation of shipbuilding contracts, refund guarantees, changed practices in ship sales and developments in ship mortgage enforcement, whether by judicial sale or otherwise.


From left to right: Matt Hannaford, Partner (Curtis Davies Gerrard LLP); Lord Clarke of Stone-cum-Ebony (UK Supreme Court), Simon Rainey QC (Quadrant Chambers); William Maclachlan (Holman Fenwick Willan LLP)


Present this year was the usual impeccable cast of legal practitioners, brokers and academics from the UK, Europe and elsewhere. It was a particularly great honour to welcome a member of the Supreme Court, Lord Clarke of Stone-cum-Ebony, who chaired a session and also very kindly agreed to write the foreword for the book of the colloquium proceedings. These, under the editorship of Professors Soyer and Tettenborn, were published by Informa in 2015 in a  book titled Ship Building, Sale and Finance. As ever, the speakers were carefully-selected, providing a balance between disciplines but nevertheless ensuring that all were professionals at the cutting edge of their disciplines.

The lengthy debates carried out at the end of each session were testament  to the fact that the participants had been well-chosen.The following papers were presented at the event:

“Battle of the Sale Forms” (Matt Hannaford, Partner, Curtis Davies Gerrard LLP, London)

“‘As Is’… as you were? The Union Power and “As Is” Provisions in Ship Sale and Purchase Contracts” (Simon Rainey QC, Quadrant Chambers, London)

“Practicalities of Ship Sales in the Current Market” (William Maclachlan, Holman Fenwick Willan LLP, London)

“Contracting by Numbers: The Different Characteristics of the Main Shipbuilding Contracts” (Professor Andrew Tettenborn, IISTL, Swansea)

 “The BIMCO NEWBUILDCON Standard Form Shipbuilding Contracts” (Chris Kidd, Partner, Ince and Co LLP, London)

 “Remedies for Breach of Shipbuilding Contracts- Is English Law Fit for Purpose?” (Simon Curtis, Partner, Curtis Davies Gerrard LLP, London)

“Application of the Prevention Principle in the Shipbuilding Context” (Simon Kverndal QC, Quadrant Chambers, London)

“Drafting and Interpreting Payment Refund Guarantees in the Shipbuilding Context” (John Forrester, Partner, Holman Fenwick Willan LLP, London)

“Evolving Nature of Builders’ Risks Cover” (Professor Baris Soyer, IISTL, Swansea) “Ship Mortgagees: Enforcement and Remedies” (Charles Buss, Partner, Watson Farley & Williams LLP, London)

“Mortgagee’s Interest Insurance” (Peter Macdonald-Eggers QC, 7 Kings Bench Walk, London)

 “Lease Finance and Demise Charters: Lessors’ Risks and Liabilities (Professor Simon Baughen, IISTL, Swansea)

“Financing Newbuilding Vessels and BARECON 2001: A Fair Deal?” (Associate Professor Theodora Nikaki, IISTL, Swansea)

“Shipping Finance and Sanctions” (David Osborne, Partner, Watson Farley & Williams, LLP, London”

“Using Derivatives to Finance Shipbuilding and Sales” (Professor Olivier Cachard, University of Lorraine, France)

“Ship Financing and Insolvency” (Associate Professor Lia Athanassiou, University of Athens, Greece).           

 Delegates and speakers, as ever, enjoyed a vivacious Colloquium dinner at Sketty Hall, very generously sponsored by top-class commercial law publishes Informa/Routledge.

After the event, Professor Andrew Tettenborn on behalf of the IISTL said:

"The enormous success of this Colloquium shows, if it needed to be shown, that the Swansea IISTL, having started from literally nothing in 2000, is now unquestionably the premier UK university research group dedicated to commercial law, recognised by faculty, lawyers and judiciary alike. This bodes enormously well for its activities in the next year, and promises that next year's Colloquium, which will mark the tenth anniversary of the inauguration of these events, will be a similarly triumphant occasion."