CODE OF CONDUCT
This Code lay dawn the way of conduct that Members of the Association of Maritime Agents of Croatia, in the relationship between themselves and those with the Principals, must follow in the performance of their activity.
The Maritime Agents shall respect the prestige and the dignity of the profession, the principle of the common trust and equality and the rules of loyal competition in the free market.
In accordance with the UNCTAD minimum standards for shipping agents as well as with FONASBA’s Code of Conduct, the Maritime Agents shall:
- perform his duties to his Principals with honesty, due diligence and impartiality,
- apply standards insuring a conscientious, diligent and efficient performance of services,
- exercise due diligence when handling moneys of the Principals,
- exercise due diligence to guard against maritime frauds,
- observe the statutory rules on Maritime Agent’s duties.
The other duties of Maritime Agents are particularly:
- to keep the professional secret,
- to protect the Principal’s interest,
- to avoid unfair competition,
- to participate in the work of the Association of Maritime Agents of Croatia,
- to inform the Association if foreign agents perform agency services in Croatia without the approval,
- to inform the former agent of the Principal if he asks his services,
- to implement the decisions of the Association’s bodies,
- to furnish data on Association’s request,
- to pay membership fees decided by the Association.
The reduction on Tariff can be granted if the Maritime Agent has a contract of general agency with the Principal or if the reduction is based on the efficiency, reduction of costs and increasing of the business.
The Maritime Agent can grant a reduction of the Tariff when the credit can not be collected at whole.
In joint business the Maritime Agent can freely agree on division of fees and/or commission.
The Maritime Agents members of the Association have the right to use the logotype of the Association of the Maritime Agents of Croatia on the firm’s paper letters.
The logotype indicating the membership with the Association of the Maritime Agents of Croatia can be used out the door and inside the offices of the firm.
The Maritime Agent has the right:
- to consult mutually themselves on all professional questions,
- to ask FONASBA’s or her bodies’ opinions through the representative of the Association in FONASBA,
- to propose to the Executive Committee to modify the rules and regulations concerning the Maritime Agents,
- to be promoted in all publications where the Association is inserted as the Agency Fee Tariff, The Shipbroker’s Register, The Bimco Bulletin, The Fairplay and others,
- to ask from the Secretariat the information (computer data) from the sources of existing data about owners, vessels, shippers when this data are purchased for the use of the Association.
The Maritime Agents voluntarily join the Association of Maritime Agents of Croatia according to the Regulations on conditions required to perform the activity of the Maritime Agent and the Constitution of the Association.
The companies non-members of the Association can not have the benefit of the Members as to be inserted in registers, directories, professional magazines where the maritime agents worldwide are inserted.
They can not neither use the advertisement done by the Association for the Members, nor be mentioned in the international rules and other acts of the Association.
Any Member of the Association shall inform all the competent bodies in the country as the foreign Principals and the Association’s officers on every act of unfair competition done by a Maritime Agent non-member of the Association.
Any Member of the Association will inform the Executive Committee if has knowledge that the act provided in Article 9 is done by a Member of the Association.
Any Member of the Association shall denounce to the Executive Committee the persons performing agents’ activity without license.
The Members of the Association of Maritime Agents are not allowed to:
1. perform activity without license,
2. stretch the Principal’s authority or use it in detriment of the other members,
3. cooperate with Maritime Agents non-members of the Association,
4. give publicity to own company in detriment of other Members,
5. represent two parties having opposite interests,
6. offer to the Principals lower priced services of third persons with the intent to obtain the agency,
7. create unnecessary expenses to the Principal,
8. offer to a foreign Principal lower priced services than that offered to a domestic one,
9. offer vessels or cargo without authority,
10. retain without reason freights, hires or demurrage belonging to the Principal,
11. give to non-members information about vessels or cargoes,
12. act in detriment of the dignity and reputation of the profession,
13. abuse of the membership of the Association,
14. employ personal without labour contract or without insurance of rights or without payment of obligations resulting from employment,
15. perform activity in spite of Court’s or other Authority’s decisions.
The Maritime Agents who wishes to become a Member of the Association shall ask for the Executive Committee of the Association and sign an application for this purpose.
The Executive Committee shall decide to accept the new Member who fills up the necessary conditions.
The membership of a new Member has to be approved on the first Assembly’s meeting.
The Maritime Agent who wishes to become a Member of the Association shall pay an entrance fee.
The Assembly of the Association establishes the amount of the entrance fee.
The Members of the Association shall pay a membership fee.
The Assembly of the Association establish the amount of the membership fee.
The membership fee shall be paid in two equal installment, the first one until 31st January and the second until 30th June.
If the amount of the membership fee as far as the entrance fee are not determined for the current year, as advance the amount payable for the previous year will apply.
The means collected from membership fees will be used to cover expenses of the Association for it’s national and international activity, for acquisition of literature and other aids, for covering the secretariat, accountings and other expenses.
The Assembly of the Association approves the budget on the beginning of the year.
The Assembly of the Association approves the balance sheet.
Any dispute arising between the Members in performing the activity, application of the Constitution or this Code, will be referred to an Arbitration of three Members, two chosen by the disputing parties nevertheless of their numbers, being the third Arbitrator the secretary of the Association as President of the Arbitration.
If the Secretary in charge is employed in the company in dispute, the Executive Committee shall nominate the President of the Arbitration.
No appeal is allowed against the Arbitration’s decision. The Member not satisfied with the Arbitration’s decision can protect his rights by regular legal way.
The Members are liable for damages to the Association for an amount not exceeding an annual membership fee.
The Association can ask the exceeding amount through the Court.
The Association is liable to the extent of the means on the account of the Association at the moment of the execution of the Court’s decision stating such a liability.
For infractions of the rule of profession, the Constitution and the rules of this Code of Conduct a disciplinary proceeding will be instituted.
A Committee of three members conducts the disciplinary proceeding.
The Assembly of the Association nominates the President and two members of the Committee.
If the disciplinary proceeding is started against the President or the members of the Disciplinary Committee or the company where they are employed, the Executive Committee shall nominate another or others members of the Disciplinary Committee.
The disciplinary proceeding can be initiated by the Executive Committee of the Association or by a third of the Members.
The disciplinary proceedings shall be initiated for misconduct or wrongful omissions in performing the activity or for indign or improper conduct.
Infraction of Maritime Agents’ duties is any act against the obligations arising from the Regulations on conditions required to perform the activity of the Maritime Agent in Croatia and those provided in this Code.
Particularly wrongful act or neglect in performing the duties of Maritime Agent are considered the:
- offering of maritime agency services to the Principal with lower prices and better conditions of that prescribed as usual,
- unfair competition in regard of the Association’s Members,
- offering unfounded rebates of third parties in shipping trade with the scope to obtain the agency,
- performing the activity without the authorization for the Principal of another agent,
- non-execution of the Association’s decisions,
- giving of wrong data to the Association,
- offensive conduct in regard to the other Members of the Association,
- non-execution or negligent execution of duties toward the Association.
The Disciplinary Committee after hearing of the Member involved and the examination of the relative documentation can absolve him from liability or pronounce the following measures:
- verbal admonition,
- written admonition,
- public admonition,
- suspension from membership up to 6 months,
- suspension from membership.
The Harbour Master conducting the Maritime Agents Register shall be notified on these measures.
This Code enters into force when accepted by the simple majority of the Assembly of the Association of Maritime Agents of Croatia.
The modification of or addition to this Code can be done on proposal of the Executive Committee or a third of Members in the way prescribed for it’s bringing.
Rijeka, 16 February 2009