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Glossary of Shipping Terms

ADR American Depository Receipt.
The exchange system for trading of foreign shares in the USA.

American Freight Rate Association.
Term for a tanker of approximately 80,000 - 105,000 dwt.
Ballast A voyage with no cargo on board to get a ship in position for the next loading port or docking.
A ballast tank is a tank that is filled with seawater when a vessel is in ballast, in order to ensure stability.
Ballast ratio Time at sea without cargo as a percentage of total time.
Bareboat (b/b) The hiring or leasing of a vessel from one company to another (the charterer), which in turn provides crew, bunkers, stores etc. and pays all operating costs.
Buoy loader Tanker specially equipped for loading at sea via buoys.
Bulk Unpackaged solid cargo such as coal, ore and grain
Bunkers The ship's fuel.
CAP Condition Assesment Program.
Det Norske Veritas' (DNV) voluntary rating system for vessels describing and quantifying the standards of a vessel.
Capesize Dry cargo carrier of 80,000 dwt or larger
Charterer Cargo owner or another person/company who hires a ship.
Charter-party Transport contract between shipowner and shipper of goods.
COA Contract of Affreightment
- quantity contract. An agreement between shipowner and shipper concerning the freight of a defined amount of cargo. The shipowner chooses the ship.
COFR Certificate of Financial Responsibility.
Certificate required by the US Coast Guard for tonnage transporting oil products in the US economic zone (due to OPA90), to confirm the owner's financial responsibility up to a specified amount for pollution caused in US waters.
Combination carrier Ship capable of carrying different types of cargo, thereby achieving a more uniform flow of shipments.
Typically termed OBO, an abbreviation for oil, bulk, ore, which means that the vessel is designed for cargoes of these and other bulk products.
Crude (oil) Unrefined oil directly from the reservoir.
Daily operating costs The costs of a vessel's technical operation, crewing and insurance (ex.costs of financing).
Demurrage Money paid to shipowner by charterer, shipper or receiver for failing to complete loading/discharging within time allowed according to charter-party.
Dispatch Remuneration payable by shipowner to charterer, shipper or receiver for loading/discharging in less than the time allowed according to the charter-party.
Dry cargo carrier A ship carrying general or bulk cargo.
Dry docking To put a vessel into a dry dock for inspection, repair and maintenance. Normally done on regular basis.

(deadweight ton)

A measure expressed in metric tons (1,000 kg) or long tons (1,016 kg) of a ship's carrying capacity, including bunker oil, fresh water, crew and provisions.
This is the most important commercial measure of the capacity.
Freight rate The agreed freight charge calculated by metric tons of cargo or deadweight ton pr month (See Worldscale).
Knot A measure of the speed of the vessel.
1 knot = 1 nautical mile per hour, that is 1,85 km/h.
Net revenue/Time charter (t/c) equivalent Gross freight income less voyage costs
(bunker costs, port duties etc.).
OBO Oil/Bulk/Ore carrier
(see Combination carrier).
Oil-Tanker Ship carrying crude oil or refined products.
If a ship is equipped to carry several types of cargo simultaneously the ship is called a Parcel Tanker.
A Shuttle Tanker is a tanker carrying oil from offshore fields to terminals.
An oil tanker especially built for the transportation of refined oil products, often with inside painted/coated tanks, is called a Product Tanker.
OPA-90 The US Oil Pollution Act of 1990.
Federal law imposing regulations on shipowners trading in US waters.
Panamax size Ship between 55,000 dwt and 80,000 dwt, the largest ship capable of navigating in the Panama Canal.
Product tanker Tanker that carries refined oil products.
Shipbroker A person/company who on behalf of shipowner/shipper negotiates a deal for the transportation of cargo at an agreed price.
Shipbrokers are also active when shipping companies negotiate the purchasing and selling of ships, both second-hand tonnage and newbuilding contracts.
Ship Management The technical administration of a ship, including services like technical operation, maintenance, repair, crewing and insurance.
Spot market Short term contracts, normally not longer than three months in duration.
Suezmax Tanker between 120,000 dwt and 160,000 dwt.
Time charter (t/c) An arrangement whereby a shipowner places a crewed ship at a charterer's disposal for a certain period.
Freight is customarily paid in advance.
The charterer also pays for bunker charges, port duties etc.
Ton 1,000 kilos (metric ton = 2,204 lb).
ULCC Ultra Large Crude Carrier.
Tanker of 320,000+ dwt.
VLCC Very Large Crude Carrier.
Tanker between 200,000 and 320,000 dwt.
Voyage charter The transportation of cargo from port(s) of loading to port(s) of discharge.
Payment is normally per ton of cargo, and the ship owner pays for bunker, port and canal charges etc.
Voyage costs Costs directly related to a specific voyage (eg. bunker).
Worldscale (Ws) International freight index for tankers.
A method of calculation of payment for the transport of oil by ships, for a single or several consecutive voyages.
Worldscale is a table giving the amount of USD pr ton oil for a number of standard routes. The rates listed in the table
- so called flat rates termed W100 - are revised annually.