Q. We export to some foreign buyers on a C&F basis. We understand that in a C&F contract, we are required to pay only the ocean freight and not the terminal handling charges that the shipping companies charge and show in the bill of lading. Can we claim such charges from the buyers?
First, please avoid the usage “C&F”. The correct usage is CFR. Now, in a CFR contract, the seller delivers by placing the goods on board the vessel at the named port of shipment or by procuring the goods so delivered on the agreed date or within the agreed period, in the manner customary at the port. The seller must bear all costs relating to the goods till they have been so delivered, the costs of loading, freight up to destination including any charges for unloading that are for seller’s account under the contract of carriage, and the cost of obtaining the transport document and sending it to the buyer. So, as a seller, you cannot claim the terminal handling charges from the buyer.