Tuesday, 16 March 2010

The Rotterdam Rules-Public Seminar

The LONDON UNIVERSITIES MARITIME LAW AND POLICY RESEARCH GROUP is pleased to invite you to a Public Seminar on

“The Rotterdam Rules - An overview and a comparison with the existing regimes”


Mr Stuart Beare

VENUE: Room GSB01, London Metropolitan University, Department of Law Governance and International Relations, 16 Goulston Street, London E1 7TP

TIME: 18.15pm for a 18.30pm start

DATE: 24 March 2010

There will be time for questions and answers. Refreshments to follow.


Mr Beare was the Chairman of the CMI International Sub Committee on Issues of Transport Law which prepared the original CMI Draft Instrument.

As a CMI Observer Mr Beare attended all thirteen sessions of UNCITRAL Working Group III from 2002 to 2008 at which the Draft Convention on Contracts for the International Carriage of Goods wholly or partly by Sea was agreed. He finally attended the 41st session of the UNCITRAL Commission in June 2008, when the Draft Convention was approved for submission to the UN General Assembly.

Mr Beare practised as a solicitor with Richards Butler in the City of London specialising in shipping law for thirty years from 1966 to 1996, after which he remained associated with the firm for some years as a consultant. He is a Vice-President of the British Maritime Law Association and in 2008 was elected a Member honoris causa of the CMI.

Mr Beare studied classics and law at Cambridge University and obtained MA and LL.B degrees.


The Rotterdam Rules were adopted by a Resolution of the UN General Assembly on 11 December 2008 and have been signed by 21 states. They are intended to replace the Hague, Hague-Visby and Hamburg Rules. The Rules were developed by UNCITRAL in the course of thirteen sessions of its Working Group III on Transport Law, but the Preliminary Draft Instrument, which was the starting point for the negotiations in Working Group III, was prepared by the CMI.

The preamble to the Resolution expresses concern that the current regime lacks uniformity and fails adequately to take into account modern transport practices. The Rules update the provisions contained in the existing regimes with particular reference to their scope of application, the obligations and liability of the carrier, the obligations of the shipper to the carrier and transport documents. They introduce provisions to address the specific concerns noted in the Resolution with regard to door-to-door transport contracts, electronic transport records and containerisation. They also include provisions that are not contained in any of the existing regimes regarding delivery of the goods, the rights of the controlling party and the transfer of rights. There are also provisions on jurisdiction and arbitration, but these will only bind states that specifically opt in to them.


Please contact:

Claire Keefe, London Metropolitan University,


Susan Hakwer, London Metropolitan University, (s.hawker@londonmet.ac.uk)

Prof. Jason Chuah, University of Westminster


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