ISO 9001: 2008 certified company  

Shipping Glossary

Approach Channel

Approach channel is typically an artificially dredged portion of the scabbed created to provide adequate navigational depth to the ships entering or leaving the port. Lack of adequate depth can be constraint for large ships from calling from certain ports.

Air Waybill

When goods are sent by air, the airline company or its authorised agent issues a waybill called air waybill. This is also known as an air consignment note. Air waybill is an acknwoledgement or the rceipt given to the shipper. Unlike Bill of Lading, it is not a document of title to goods. It establishes the terms between a shipper and an air transportation company and consignee for transport of goods. In an air waybill, description of commodity, applicable air trasportation charges, conditions, limitations of liability and shipping instruction are included. The air waybill covers both domestic and international fleights transporting cargo to a specified destination. The air waybill is a non-nogotiable document which serves as receipt for the shipper evidencing that the carrier has accepted the goods listed and obligates itself to carry the consignment to the airport of destination according to specified conditions.

Arrival Notice

Written notice sent by a carrier to a nominated party advising of the arrival of the vessel and/or a certain shipment.

Artificial Harbour

Artificial harbour is created by constructing physical obstructing structures like break waters, artificial mounds, dykes etc. so that impact of sea currents are minimized and ships can enter the harbour area safely.

Artificial Lagoon

An artificial lagoon port is established by creation of dredged lagoon, which extends the sea approach into the land area, which protects the ships entering the lagoon area from strong sea currents. New Mangalore port in Karnataka is one such port established in India by carrying out an artificial lagoon.

Ballast Discharge

Ballast discharge refers to discharge of sea water stored in the ship’s cargo holds, when a ship has to said without cargo.

Bare Boat Charter

A charter whereby the charterer leases the bare ship and appoints the master and crew himself. Charterer take over all responsibility for the operation of the vessel and expenses for the duration.

Barge Jetties

Barge jetties are typically RCC structures that are erected on the water front to handle loading and unloading of cargoes on to barge using grab cranes.


A vertical division of a vessel, used as a part of the indication of a stowage place for containers.

Berth Hire Charges

Berth hire charges from part of the port related dues claimed by the port authorities, which relate to the fees charged to a shipping line towards hiring of the berths for cargo unloading and loading operations at a port. The charges are calculated on the basis of number of berths engaged by a shipping line and the duration of a berth hire in terms of berth days or hours.

Bill of lading

A document issued on behalf of the carrier which evidences a contract of carriage by sea.


Build-Own-Operate-Share-Transfer (BOOST) is a contractual modality, wherein an investor (a licensee) in involved along with the licensor is involved in building a infrastructure facility, owning and operating the facility for the stipulated period of lease and shares the facility with the licensor and finally transfers the ownership of assets back to the licensor, after the expiry if the lease period.

BOOST Law (Gujarat)

Build-Own-Operate-Share-Transfer (BOOST) is a mode of contract for taking up infrastructure related projects that has been adopted under a specially enacted legislation of the Gujarat Government, wherein private investor builds the infrastructure facility, owns and operates the facility for a stipulated lease period and transfers ownership back to the licensor after the period is over.


Build-Own-Transfer (BOT) is one of the modes of financing a infrastructure project, wherein private investor builds the infrastructure facility, operates it for a specified lease period and has to finally transfer the ownership rights to the licensor after the expiry of the agreed lease period.

Break Bulk

Break bulk cargo forms part of the general cargo handled by a port, which comprises of small parcel sizes of various bulk and other minor commodities which are carried in the general cargo holds in a ship.

Buffer Yard

Buffer yard refers to a port-side warehousing of mainly factory-stuffed containers that directly arrive at the port for being loaded on to but need to be temporarily stored till the ship is berthed for loading in the port.

Bulk Carrier

Single deck vessel designed to carry homogeneous unpacked dry cargoes such as grain, iron ore and coal.

Bunker tank

Spaces on board a vessel to store fuel.

Bunker Adjustment Factor

Abbreviation: BAF. Adjustment applied by shipping lines or liner conferences to offset the effect of fluctuation in the cost of bunkers.


Quantity of fuel on board a vessel.


Transport of goods between two ports or places located in the same country.


Goods transported or to be transported, all goods carried on a ship covered by a B/L. As per IMO definition: any goods, wares, merchandise, and articles of every kind whatsoever carried on a ship, other than mail, ship’s stores, ship’s spare parts, ship’s equipment, stowage material, crew’s effects and passengers’ accompanied baggage.

Cargo Manifest

Document which lists all bills of lading particulars of the goods loaded on a vessel, for official and administrative purposes.

Carrier Haulage

An inland transport service which is performed by the Carrier and/or a subcontractor for the account and on behalf of the Merchant, in accordance with the conditions and charges of the relevant bill of lading or transport document.

Certificate of Origin

A certificate, showing the country of original producti on of goods. Frequently used by customs in ascertaining duties under preferential tariff programs or in connection with regulation imports from specific sources.

Charter Party

A contract in which the shipowner agrees to place his vessel or a part of it at the disposal of a third party, the charterer, for the carriage of goods for which he receives a freight per ton cargo, or to let his vessel for a definite period or trip for which a hire is paid.

Charter Party Bill of Lading

"Charter Party" is a contract between the ship owners and the hirer who may hire the vessel on a voyage basis or duration basis. The document containing the terms and conditions of this contract is known as Charter Party. The shipper who has chartered the ship and may agree to carry the goods of others in the ship and issue a Bill of Lading is called Charter Party Bill of Lading. This kind of Bill of Lading Subject to the terms and conditions agreed upon by the hirerof the ships/ship space and ship owners. Generally, banks do not accept charter Bill of Lading as the ship owner may exercise lien over the goods in case charters do.


The legal person who has signed a charter party with the owner of a vessel or an aircraft and thus hires or leases a vessel or a part of the capacity thereof.

Clean Bill of Lading

A Bill of Lading which does not contain any qualification about the apparent order and condition of the goods to be transported (it bears no stamped clauses on the front of the B/L).It bears no superimposed clauses expressly declaring a defective condition of the goods or packaging (resolution of the ICS 1951).

Clean on Board

When goods are loaded on board and the document issued on respect to these goods is clean. Note: Through the usage of the UCP 500 rules the term has now become superfluous.

Claused Bill of Lading

Under this type of Bill of lading, certainsuperimposed clauses or reservation expressly declaring the defective natire of goods,their packing etc., are mentioned by the master of the vessel/Steamer agent.

Compined Transport Bill of Lading

Compined Transport Bill of Lading also known as "Multimodel Transport Document". A Combined Transport Bill of Lading is a Bill Lading issued by a shipping company or its agents who act as combined transport operators and carry the goods from start to end. The shipping company or its agents act as pricipal carrier(called contractual carriers) guaranteeing safe carriage of goods. Such a continues liabilty is not available in the case of through Bill of Lading. It is a nogotiable document issued in sets subject to the we have the Multimodal Transportation of Goods Act 1993, govering issuance of such documents.


The party such as mentioned in the transport document by whom the goods, cargo or containers are to be received.


Consortium is a form of cooperation between two or more carriers to operate in a particular trade.


An item of equipment as defined by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) for transport purposes.

Container Bill of Lading

This type of Bill of Lading indicates that the goods are carried ia a container as one unit of cargo. The container in which the goods are locked-in are generally numbered in a systematic manner indicating ownership, type of container, size size of container and identification number. This facilities quicker loading/unloading at the ports and thus avoids congestion.

Container Lease

The contract by which the owner of containers (lessor) gives the use of container to a lessee for a specified period of time and for fixed payments.

Container Number

Identification number of a container consisting of prefix and serial number and check digit. (e.g. ECMU 123456-7)

Currency Adjustment Factor

Abbreviation: CAF Adjustment applied by shipping lines or liner conferences on freight rates to offset losses or gains for carriers resulting from fluctuation in exchange rates of tariff currencies.

Customs Broker

An authorised agent specialised in customs clearance procedures on account of importers/exporters.

Container Yard (CY)

A facility at which FCL traffic and empty containers are received from or delivered to the Merchant by or on behalf of the Carrier.

Creek Port

Creek port refers to a port facility that is set up along a creek formation which generally extends the sea approach into the land mass.

Capital Dredging

Capital dredging activity in ports mainly refers to dredging of the approach channel and port basins, which are normally taken up on a one-time basis for creation of basic physical infrastructure of port. Capital dredging projects are also typically highly cost-intensive and considered as part of the capital expenditure of ports.

Captive Berths

Captive berths refer to those dedicated berths in a port that are exclusively reserved by a single user for loading and unloading of cargo, under a special contract agreement with the port authority/operator. Some times the shipping lines that have regular movement of their ships at a particular port may also have a captive berth to avoid normal berthing delays.

Cargo Dwell Time

Cargo dwell time refers to the total time taken by cargo after it is ready to be loaded till it is actually loaded on to a ship or total time taken before cargo is taken out of the port after being unloaded from ship.

Cargo hinterland

Cargo hinterland refers to the area contiguous to the port that acts as the point of origin or destination for cargo with respect to cargo handled at any particular port.

Cargo Related Charges

Cargo-related charges refers to port dues payable on account of cargo loading and unloading operations including its movement to the port-side storage area.

Coastal Regulation Zones (CRZ)

Coastal Regulation Zones (CRZ) are areas demarcated under the Environment Protection Act, where there are a number of restrictions imposed on construction of any artificial structures with a view to protect the marine ecology, including various forms of marine life and ecological systems.

Coasting Vessels

Coasting vessels are exclusively engaged in the carriage of cargo and passengers between any port or places in India and are licenced to operate under the coasting licencing provisions of the Merchant Shipping Act 1958. Such vessels also include vessels of the Coast Guart and Indian Navy.


Container Corporation of India (CONCOR) is subsidiary of Indian Railways handling bulk of the rail-based movement of containers in and out of ports and ICDs in India.

Container Freight Station (CFS)

Container Freight Station (CFS) is a customs-bonded warehousing facility, where the containers are stuffed and destuffed for export and import.

Conventional Dry Bulk Cargo

Conventional dry bulk cargoes refer to cargoes, which are handled like coal, iron ore and food grains.

Container Shipping Lines Association(CSLA)

Container Shipping Lines Association (CSLA) is a association of container shipping lines in India and takes up issues of common concern to container lines operating in India Ports.

Dangerous Goods

Goods are to be considered dangerous if the transport of such goods might cause harm, risk, peril, or other evil to people, environment, equipment or any property whatsoever.

Dangerous Goods Declaration

Document issued by a consignor in accordance with applicable conventions or regulations, describing hazardous goods or materials for transport purposes, and stating that the latter have been packed and labelled in accordance with the provisions of the relevant conventions or regulations.


Abbreviation: DWT. The total weight of cargo, cargo equipment, bunkers, provisions, water, stores and spare parts which a vessel can lift when loaded to her maximum draught as applicable under the circumstances. The deadweight is expressed in tons.

Delivery Order

A document issued by or on behalf of the carrier authorising the release of import cargo identified thereon and manifested under a single Bill of Lading.


Demurrage refers to the penalty imposed by Port authority on the receivers of cargo for not clearing cargo from the port premises within the stipulated time.

Direct Delivery

Direct discharge from vessel onto railroad car, road vehicle or barge with the purpose of immediate transport from the port area

Dock Labour Board

A Statutory authority under the Dock Labour Board Act, whose mandate is to take care of the interests of dock labour and allocates them work as required by port authority.

Dry Docking

Dry docking of ship refer to docking of a ship for repairs and other related maintenance work at a facility specially created for the purpose.


Dead Weight Tonnes is a measure of the cargo carrying capacity of a ship and refers to the total weight of the cargo that a ship can carry when loaded down to its marks, including the weight of the fuel, stores, water ballast, fresh water, crew passenger and other baggage.


Road transportation between the nearest railway terminal and the stuffing place.


A government order prohibiting the entry or departure of commercial vessels or goods at its ports.


The type of material used, 20 feet dry, 40 feet container, open top, …


Empties refer to containers that are without cargo but need to be moved to locations where they are to be stuffed with cargo.

Estuary Ports

Estuary ports are those ports that are located alone the inland estuaries that are formed inside the coastal line and which connect many interior places with the sea.

Express Bill of Lading

Express Bill of Lading is a document required for the fast delivery of consignment. The original bill of Lading is not required in this case, which is surrendered at the load port.

Fair Weather Ports

Fair weather ports are those ports that are not operational throughout the year and are generally closed during the monsoon months, when seas are very rough.


Full Container Load (FCL) refers to those container loaded to their full capacity. In tonnage terms, a 20-ft FCL container to supposed to carry 14-15 tonnes of cargo.

Finger Jetties

Finger jetties are artificially created narrow width RCC-based structures that protrude into the sea to take advantage of deeper draft availability away from the shoreline for berthing ships and other vessels.

Flat Rack Container (Flat)

A container with two end walls and open sides.

Forty Foot Equivalent Unit

Abbreviation: FEU Unit of measurement equivalent to one forty foot shipping container.

Forwarder (Freight Forwarder)

The party arranging the carriage of goods including connected services and/or associated formalities on behalf of a shipper or consignee.

Free In and Out

Abbreviation: FIOTransport condition denoting that the freight rate excludes the costs of loading and discharging.

Free In Liner Out

Abbreviation: FILO.Transport condition denoting that the freight rate is inclusive of the sea carriage and the cost of discharging, the latter as per the custom of the port. It excludes the cost of loading.

Free Port

An international port or an area within an international port at which, crew, passengers,baggage, cargo, mail and stores may be disembarked or unloaded, may remain and may be transhipped,without being subjected to any customs charges or duties.

Free Trade Zone

A part of the territory of a state where any goods introduced are generally regarded, in so far as import duties and taxes are concerned, as being exempted Kyoto Convention.)

Freight All Kinds

Abbreviation: FAKSingle freight which is charged irrespective if the commodity.

Freight Collect

Freight and charges to be paid by the consignee, receiver of the good.

Freight Manifest

Document which lists all amounts of money due for the carriage of the goods on a vessel.

Freight Prepaid

Freight and charges to be paid by the shipper.

Full Liner Terms ( Liner in Liner out)

Condition of carriage denoting that costs for loading and unloading are borne by the carrier subject the custom of the port concerned.

Fully Cellular Containership

Abbreviation: FCC.A vessel specifically designed to carry containers, with cell-guides under deck and necessary fittings and equipment on deck.

General Cargo

Cargo, consisting of goods, unpacked or packed, for example in cartons, crates, bags or bales, often palletised. General cargo can be shipped either in breakbulk or containerised.

Gross Weight

Weight (mass) of goods including packing, and including the carrier’s equipment expressed in whole kilograms on tons.

Gangway charges

Gangway charges refer to the charges levied by the port authority for use of roads and passages in the port area for carrying cargo from the berth-side to the storage area.

General Cargo

General cargo refers to aggregate of container cargo, break bulk and other cargo and excludes liquid and bulk cargoes.

Golden Quadrilateral

Golden Quadrilateral refers to national highway project that seeks to directly link up all the four major metro cities in the country and create a North South and East West corridor.


Gross Registered Tonnage is a notified measure of ship capacity calculated from the volume of all enclosed spaces measured in cubic meters, using a standard formula. For some ship types, especially those with complex hull forms, the gross tonnage and gross registered tonnage may be significantly different.

Hague Rules

Rules governing the carriage of goods by sea and identifying the rights and responsibilities of carriers and owners of cargo. These rules were published in 1924 following an international convention and were subsequently given the force of law by many maritime nations.


The inland carriage of cargo or containers between named locations/points.

House Bill of Lading

The House Bill of Lading is issued by the freight forwarder to the shipper, giving details of the consignment to be carried to the destinationcountry. The House Bill of Lading Generally issued by Non Vessel Opperating Container Carriers (VVOCCs)


Inland Container Depot is a cargo storage and transit facility that is connected to a port by a rail.

Inland Waterway Authority of India (IWAI)

Inland Waterway Authority of India (IWAI) is a nodal statutory authority created under the IWAI Act for purposes of development of inland waterway transport system in the country.

Inner Harbour

Inner harbour refers to a natural harbour area that gets created close to the shore line by incursion of the seas into the land mass.

Intermediate Ports

Intermediate ports refer to those smaller ports that are located between two major ports and which can partly offtake some of the cargo traffic from the major ports, especially with respect to captive cargo that are destined for major industry and manufacturing plants close to them.

International Hub Port

International hub port refer to a port that acts as a cargo consolidation point for overseas-bound cargo from a number of surrounding port locations. Bulk of the cargo handled through a international hub port are actually transshipped from other ports.

Inter-port Competition

Inter-port competition refers to market competition for the same cargo between two or more ports.

Intra-port Competition

Intra-port competition refers to competition for cargo between various cargo terminal operators at a single port location.


The act of intentionally throwing cargo overboard, e.g. with the objective of lightening a vessel, which has run aground, such for the common good of all interests: vessel, crew and remaining cargo


Kudremukh Iron Ore Company Limited is one of the largest mining and iron ore exporting companies in Karnataka.

Lash Bill of Lading

Under this type of Bill of Lading, the state that the goods have been received and placed on board a barge,to be carried and ultimatly placed on the mother vessel/"Lash" stands Lighter Abraod ships. Thus, it is the same as a Received for Shipment Bill of Lading until it bears a clause stating that the barge is out on board the parent vessel


Less than Container Load refers to partial stuffing of the containers, which are moved between ports due to non-availability of full container cargo loads.

Letter of Credit

Abbreviation: L/C.A written undertaking by a bank (issuing bank) given to the seller (beneficiary) at the request, and on the instructions of the buyer (applicant) to pay at sight or at a determinable future date up to a stated sum of money, within a prescribed time limit and against stipulated documents.

Letter of Indemnity

Document in which one party undertakes to compensate and protect another from liability for the performance and for the costs and consequences of carrying out a certain act. The issue of a letter of indemnity is sometimes used in order to allow consignee to take delivery of goods without surrendering Original Bill of Lading which has been delayed or become lost.


A legal claim upon real or personal property to pay a debt or duty.

Liner Bill of Lading

This is issued by the shipping companies sho are members of conference lines having a scheduled and strictly-timed run, while the tramp steamer is a chartered ship prepared to carry anything anywhere without a regular trip. A tramp steamer may deviate from the route and make unscheduled calls at varies ports.

Liner In Free Out

Abbreviation: LIFO.Transport condition denoting that the freight rate is inclusive of the sea carriage and the cost of loading, the latter as per the custom of the port. It excludes the cost of discharging.


Lighterage refer to movement of cargo by small ships and barges in small parcel sizes often resorted to at ports that cannot otherwise support entry of large cargo ships, due to lack of adequate draft and other facilities.

Master bill of Lading

The Master Bill of Lading is issued by the original Carrier/Steamer agent or shipping line to freight forwarder, who generally consolidates, giving details of the cargo to be carried by the liner.

Mate’s Receipt

A document signed by the chief officer of a vessel acknowledging the receipt of a certain consignment on board of that vessel. On this document, remarks can be made as to the order and condition of the consignment.

Merchant Haulage

Inland transport of cargo in shipping containers arranged by the Merchant. It includes empty container-moves to and from hand-over points in respect of containers released by the Carrier to Merchants.

Maintenance Dredging

Maintenance dredging refers to the dredging work undertaken by a port at a regular intervals to maintain the draft of the approach channel and draft along-side berths, especially in case of riverine and estuary ports.

Major ports

Major ports in India are those ports that are notified as “major ports” under the Major Port Trusts Act 1963.

Marine Related Charges

Marine related charges refer to charges such as berth hiring charges, wharfage light dues etc. for use of marine infrastructure maintained by a port authority.

Mechanical Dry Bulk Cargo

Mechanical dry bulk cargo refer to those dry bulk cargo items like coal, iron ore, clinker etc. which are loaded and unloaded from ships at ports using mechanised cargo handling facilities like conveyors and other technology-aided means.

Minor Ports

Minor ports in India are those dry outside the preview of the Major Port Trusts Act and which are administered by state governments or the State Maritime Boards (SMBs) constituted for the purpose.

Mother Vessels

Mother vessels are large cargo ships that operate on major trade routes carrying cargo that are consolidated for them by smaller feeder ships from a number of smaller ports.

Multi Purpose-Berths

Multi-purpose berths refer to berths, which can handle more than one type of cargo.

Natural Harbour

Natural Harbour, such as Mumbai, is formed when a large portion sea ingresses into land mass and creates a natural sea-front, which does not experience normal ocean currents and which provide tranquil and safe waterfront for ships to sail into and out of the port.

Net Weight

The weight of the goods, including all packing but excluding the carrier’s equipment.

Non Vessel Operating Common Carrier

Abbreviation: NVOCC. A party who undertakes to carry goods and issues his own name Bill of Lading for such carriage, without having the availability of any own means of transport.

Notify Party

The party to be notified of arrival of goods

Non-Working Time

Non-working time at a port measured in terms of time duration when a berth remains vacant and unused.

Output per ship berthday

A performance indicator of berth productivity measured in terms of tonnage of cargo handled per ship per single berthday.

On-Board Bill of Lading

This Bill of Lading evidences goods having been loaded on board the specified vessel. Such a Bill fo Lading will have a notation "Shipped on Board" or words to that effect.In these cases the date of issuance of Bill of Lading will bw deemed to be the date of shipment.

On carriage

The carriage of containers by any mode of transport to the place of delivery after the discharge from the ocean vessel at the port of discharge.

Open Top Container

A freight container similar in all respect to a general purpose container except that it has no rigid roof but may have a flexible and movable or removable cover, for example one made of canvas or plastic or reinforced plastic material normally supported on movable or removable roof bows.

Out of Gauge Cargo

Cargo which dimensions are exceeding the normal dimensions of a 20 or 40 feet container, e.g. overlength,overwidth, overheight, or combinations thereof.

Over-dimensional Cargo

Over-dimensional Cargo refers to non-standard or large-sized and odd shaped cargo that need to be handled exclusively for their safe transportation.


Parcel-size refers to the tonnage per shipment handled by a cargo-carrying ship, with reference to a commodity per single voyage between port of origin and port of destination.

Passenger Jetty

Passenger jetty refers to an artificially created RCC structure used for handling passenger vessels and for disembarking of passengers.

Panamax Size

The maximum measurements and dimensions of a vessel capable to pass the Panama Canal (33 metres).


Pilotage refers to a navigational support extended to ships for entering and exiting the ports from the point of anchorage to the their allocated berths. It involves provision for supply pilotage vessels and pilots, who safely navigate the ships in the port area.

Pilotage Fees

Pilotage fees refers to the charges levied by the port authorities towards providinf the pilotage assistance to the ships point to the berth in the port area, by providing pilot vessels. Under Indian Port laws, provision for pilotage services by the port trust organizations are compulsory.

Port Authority

Port authority refers to the designated statutory/legal agency, empowered by the government, which is responsible for administering all developmental and operational activities in a port.

Port Developer

Port developer is an agency that takes up the development of various port-related assets and facilities.

Port Operator

Port Operator is one who operates various port-related services.

Per-berthing Time

A measure of time starting from the point of anchoring of a ship in the high seas to its final berthing in a support.

Place of Delivery

The location where a consignment (shipment) is delivered to the consignee viz. the place where the carrier’s liability ends for the transport venture.

Place of Receipt

The location where a consignment (shipment) is received by the carrier from the shipper viz. the place where the carrier’s liability the transport venture commences.


The shared use of an equipment by a number of companies, which make together the investments in the equipment mentioned.

Port of Call

Place where a vessel actually drops anchor or moors during a certain voyage.

Port of Discharge

The port where the cargo is actually unloaded from the vessel.

Port of Loading

The port where the cargo is actually loaded on the vessel.

Pre-trip Inspection

Abbreviation: PTI0A technical inspection of Reefer containers prior to positioning for stuffing.


The carriage of containers by any mode of transport from the place of receipt to the port of loading on the ocean vessel.


Person for whom another person acts as agent.

Project Cargo

Quantity of goods connected to the same project and often carried on different moments and from various places.


Rail India Technical Services is a project consultancy and execution organization that mainly take up projects in the railway and other transport infrastructure areas.


An artificial inclined path, road or track along which wheeled vehicles, cargo and trailers may pass for the purpose of changing their elevation and facilitating the loading and unloading operation

Short Form Bill of Lading

A Bill of Lading evidences as underlying contract of carriege and hence should have the terms and conditions of carriage printed on it. In case of a Short Form Bill of Lading, the contract of carriege may not be stated in full and merely states the name of the shipper,name of ship, date of shipment etc. For full details, another document may be cited for being referred to. The total number of packages and description are also to be stated in the document.

Reefer Cargo

Cargo requiring temperature control.

Reefer Container

A thermal container with refrigerating appliances (mechanical compressor unit, absorption unit etc.) to control the temperature of cargo.

Roll-on Roll-off

Abbreviation: RoRo.System of loading and discharging a vessel whereby the cargo is driven on and off by means of a ramp.


The determination of the most efficient route(s) that people, goods, materials and or means of transport have to follow.

Riverine Port

Riverine port is one that is located along the river, close to a port of its confluence with water.

Satlite Port

Satellite port refers to the development of a location that is in close proximity to an existing nearby major port.


Single Bouy Mooring (SBM) is a floating structure that is erected in the high seas. It features a rotatable platform with inlet/outlet for receiving of crude oil cargo and other liquid cargos, from large tanker vessels, which in turn are connected by pipelines though the fixed part of the floating berth structure to the nearby land storage point. Bulk of the crude oil handling on West Coast of India is currently done though such SBM facilities off the ports of Kandla and Sikka, respectively managed by Reliance and Indian Oil Corporations (IOC)

Sethusamudran Canal

Sethusamudran Canal refers to the proposed canal connecting Gulf of Mannar with Palk Bay, which will enable ships from Western India Ports to directly call on the Tuticorin Port, without having to circumnavigate Sri Lanka, as is the current requirement. The available depth in this region is very shallow and is merely about 11 feet.


The saving or rescue of a vessel and/or the cargo from loss and/or damage at sea.

Service Bill

A service Bill (of Lading) is a document issued by one carrier to another for documentary and internal control purposes No freight details will be mentioned and the service Bill of Lading is not a contract of carriage.

Ship operator

A ship operator is the (legal) person making decision about the daily operation and employment of the ship and crew.

Ship owner

The legal person officially registered as such in the certificate of registry of the vessel.


The merchant (person) by whom, in whose name or on whose behalf a contract of carriage of goods has been concluded with a carrier or any party by whom, in whose name or on whose behalf the goods are actually delivered to the carrier in relation to the contract of carriage.


Special chain, wire rope, synthetic fibre strap or ropes used for cargo handling purposes.


The space on board a vessel, required by one TEU.


Device used for lifting containers and unitised cargo.


An identifiable amount of containers stowed in a orderly way in one specified place on an (ocean) terminal, container freight station, container yard or depot.


The total weight of the containers in a certain row.

Stale Bill of Lading

Every credit which calls for a transport document(s) should aso stipulate a specified period of time after the date of shipment, during which presentation must be made in compliance with theterms and conditions of the credit. if nosuch period of time is stipulated, banks will not accept documents presented to them later than 21 days after the date of shipment. In anyevent, documents must be presented not later than the expiry dateof the credit.


A person or company working on the Terminal, loading, stowing, discharging vessels, etc…


The placing and securing of containers on board a vessel.

Stowage Factor

Ratio of a cargo’s cubic measurement to its weight, expressed in cubic feet or cubic metres per ton, used in order to assess the total quantity of cargo which can be loaded in a certain space.

Stowage Plan

A plan indicating the locations of all the containers on a container vessel (synonym Bayplan)


The unloading of cargo out of a container.


The loading of cargo into a container.


An additional charge added to the net ocean freight.

Special Economic Zones

Special Economic Zones (SEZ) is a specially demarcated area where the industries are exclusively set up for purposes of export and are exempted from the ambit of customs and taxation Laws.

State Maritime Boards

State Maritime Boards (SMBs) are nodal regulatory and developmental agencies set up under the authority of the state government for development of various minor and intermediate ports, including captive ports forming part of the State’s coastline.

Switch Bill of Lading

Often called "the trader's second set" and intented to replace the first set of Bill of Lading issued. Usually used where a seller/trader wishes to keep the name of his supplies i.e. shipper, secret from the ultimate buyer of the goods. Under this type of Bill of Lading only name of the shipperand or consignee and or notify party can be changed. The normal Bill of Lading has to be surrenderd, but the Bill of Lading number remais the same. TAMP

Tariff Authority for Major Ports (TAMP) is a tariff regulating authority creaeted under the Major Port Trust Act 1963 to determine the incidence of various port- related dues and maintain parity of rates between the public ports and new privately managed terminals in a port.

Tank Farms

Tank Farms are essentially shore-based storage facilities for liquid cargo and are often connected by pipeline through which the stored liquid cargo is finally evacuated to actual user sites like refineries.

Tidal Ports

Tidal ports are those ports, whose available draft conditions both at the port entrance and at berths are dependent on tidal conditions. Ships at such ports generally enter and leave such ports only in high tide conditions, as available depth under the low tide conditions are not adequate to the movement of ships.

Total stay at Berth

Total stay at Berth refers to the total time duration of stay of a ship at berth from the time of docking of the ship at the allocated berth to its final departure.

Towage Charges

Towage charges pertain towage services provided by the port authority.

Tank Container

A tank, surrounded by a framework with the overall dimensions of a container for the transport of liquids or gasses in bulk.

Tare Weight of Container

Mass of an empty container including all fittings and appliances associated with that particular type of container on its normal operating condition.

Terms of Delivery

All the conditions agreed upon between trading partners regarding the delivery of goods and the related services. Note: Under normal circumstances the INCO terms are used to prevent any misunderstandings.


Twenty Foot Equivalent Unit. Unit of measurement equivalent to one twenty foot shipping container.


A horizontal division of a vessel from bottom to top. The numbers run from bottom to deck and from deck upwards and are used as a part of the indication of a stowage place for containers.

Time Charter

A contract whereby a vessel is let to a charterer for a stipulated period of time or voyage, for a remuneration known as hire, generally a daily rate per ton deadweight. The shipowner contnues to manage the vessel through the master and crew who remain his servants.

Through Bill of Lading

A Bill of Lading, which is issued for the entire voyage covering both domestic and international transport of export goods between specified points for specified charges, is called a Through Bill of Lading. This is used generally when the goods have to take more than one mode of transport. Since it does not specify that the goods are on-board the ship, it resembles a Received for Shipment Bill of Lading


A shipment under one Bill of Lading, whereby sea (ocean) transport is ‘broken’ into two or more parts. The port where the sea (ocean) transport is ‘broken’ is the transhipment port.


Device which has to be inserted into the corner fittings of a shipping container and is turned or twisted, thus locking the container for the purpose of securing or lifting.

Transshipment Cargo

Transshipment cargo is received at a port from another nearby port for further movement to distant ports.

Tug Hire Charges

Tug hire charges relate to the tugging services provided by the port operator/authority, which own and operate the tugs.

Turnaround Time

Turnaround time refers to time taken while a ship is docked at a berth for loading and unloading operations, till the time it leaves the berth.

Turning Circle

Turning circle is a circular area which enables a ship, to maneuver its way into or out of the berthing area.

Vessel Related Charges

Vessel related charges pertain to those charges that are levied by the port authorities on shipping lines for various ship-related services provided such as anchorage, mooring, pilotage, tugging, towage etc.

Voyage Number

Reference number assigned by the carrier to the voyage of the vessel.

Weighment Charge

Weighment charges refer to charges for weighing services using facilities such as weigh bridges in a port area.

War Risk

War risks must be covered under a separate policy for war risks.


Non-negotiable document evidencing the contract for the transport of cargo.


A place for berthing vessels. Wharfage Wharfage is charged separately by many India ports as part of the marine related charges for having made the provision of a navigable waterfront.

Yield Management

The process of maximising the contribution of every slot or vessel. Basically it should be seen as the process of allocating the right type of capacity to the right kind of customer at the right price as to maximise revenue or yield. The concept should be used in combination with load factor management.