The number of cruise vessels calling at Chilean ports has decreased dramatically since 2008, a trend partly caused by the current prohibition on the functioning of game casinos in territorial waters. However, under a proposed draft amendment to the Casinos Law, the excessively onerous requirements currently in force for the exploitation of casino games in cruising vessels will be at least partially eliminated.
Under the Merchant Navy Law, only Chilean vessels are permitted to provide maritime or fluvial transport services (of cargo or passengers) within the national territory or in the exclusive economic zone. Under a recent modification proposal, foreign vessels will now be permitted to undertake cabotage, subject to restrictions. Local shipping companies fear that this may result in potential loss of labour for Chilean crews.
A Santiago City court has confirmed the court's jurisdiction to grant interim protection measures in connection with ongoing arbitral proceedings conducted in New York. This was the first time that this criterion had been tested in the context of international arbitration proceedings relating to a shipping dispute.
A minister of a Chilean court of appeal recently issued a first instance judgment confirming the court's jurisdiction to handle proceedings relating to the constitution of a limitation fund. The proceedings were commenced by a Chilean owner in regard to alleged pollution liability arising from a collision with a foreign vessel that resulted in spilled bunkers.
It is well known that arbitration clauses are the general rule when dealing with bills of lading, time or voyage charters or contracts of affreightment. Unfortunately, the parties to these agreements are not always aware of the real scope of these clauses and the steps required to enforce an arbitral award, particularly when the enforcement is requested in a different jurisdiction to that which resolved the dispute.
The Customs Authority recently issued Resolution 4730/2009, which amended Chapter III of the Compendium of Customs Regulations. The deconsolidation of a container can now be requested whenever the goods cannot be cleared during or after the legal storage period, or whenever the dispatch has been suspended. It is hoped that these changes will expedite the turnaround time for container use.
The Iquique Court of Appeal recently issued a second instance judgment confirming a recent arbitration award which held that in Chile, the carrier and its agents and servants are not liable for failure to notify the consignee of the arrival of the vessel and goods.
A recently issued first instance arbitration award has confirmed that in Chile, a carrier and its agents and servants are not liable for failure to notify the consignee of the arrival of the vessel and goods. Any previous notices given by the carrier to the consignee do not constitute a binding practice and thus do not oblige the carrier or its agents and servants to do the same every time.
Under Chilean law, four categories of agent are involved in shipping activities: general agents; ship agents; stowage and unstowage agents (also known as wharfage companies); and protecting agents. This update looks at some of the common and specific rules which apply to each category.
Chilean collision regulations apply to damages that arise, for example, from a collision between two or more vessels or from waves caused by the movement of a vessel resulting in damage to other vessels, cargo or people onboard, even if an actual collision does not occur.
The regulations regarding naval mortgages are contained in Book 3, Title 3 of the Chilean Code of Commerce. The naval mortgage can be defined as a real right that may be established on large vessels and naval devices (under Chilean regulations, those with a gross registered tonnage of more than 50 tons), built or under construction, provided they are duly registered in the respective Chilean licence register.
A Supreme Court decision has confirmed that cargo claims against ocean carriers are now subject to a higher test, as the presumption of fault or negligence on the part of the carrier for loss of or damage to the goods or for delay in delivery will not be triggered if it cannot be shown that the damage, loss or delay in delivery occurred during the carrier's period of responsibility.
The Chilean Code of Commerce regulates 'salvage', which is defined as any act or activity undertaken to assist a vessel, naval device or property in danger, regardless of the waters where the act occurs or the activity is performed. The salvage regulations apply to all salvage operations unless the relevant contract expressly or implicitly stipulates otherwise.
The Customs Authority has issued a report clarifying that sea waybills are valid documents for evidencing the consignment of goods in the context of customs clearance proceedings. This resolution overrides the authority's earlier Decision 1460/03, which drew the opposite conclusion.
Towage is regulated under Title V, Paragraph 6 of the Code of Commerce. In this respect, Chilean regulations distinguish between two different types of towage operation: transport towage and manoeuvres towage. The code also sets out various requirements for the tug to be used in both types of towage.
The Customs Authority has issued a resolution implementing modifications to the cargo delivery procedures relating to Chilean free trade zones. The new resolution complements rules introduced in 2005 to overcome the problem of cargo delivery at Chilean ports without surrender of the original bill of lading.
The Customs Authority has issued Resolution 3505/05, which refers to additional procedures for the clearance of oil bulk cargoes. The resolution sets out an exception relating to the circumstances in which a copy of the original bill of lading can be provided instead of using the original.
Under the Chilean Commerce Code, all maritime disputes must be resolved by an arbitrator. However, in certain cases the ordinary civil courts may hear maritime disputes, including if the parties mutually agree to this either by including it in the contract from which the dispute arises or by prior written agreement.
A resolution recently issued by the Customs Authority has finally overcome the problem of cargo delivery at Chilean ports without surrender of the original bill of lading. As a result, ocean carriers are now directly involved in cargo delivery procedures, both in practice and from a legal point of view, for the first time.
The maritime privileges on cargo are regulated by the Commercial Code. Although there is no statutory definition of 'privileges on cargo', such privileges are preferred and preclude the enforcement of any other privileges set out by the law if these apply to the same goods or rights.