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Terms & Conditions

Miles Express Cargo Systems Limited Standard Trading Terms & Conditions

1. Interpretation:

1.1 The following expressions shall have the meanings set forth hereunder:

  • “dangerous goods” means solids, liquids, or gases that can harm people, other living organisms, property, or the environment, officially classified as such, and includes goods which are or may become hazardous, inflammable goods (i.e. which may easily be set on fire), radioactive, noxious or of damaging nature and goods likely to harbour or encourage vermin and, or pests;
  • “freight forwarder” means Miles Express Cargo Systems Limited;
  • “unit” means, any transport unit, flexi-tank, trailer, container, transportable tank, flat-rack, or any other article of transport used to carry or consolidate goods and any equipment of or connected thereto and in respect of which the freight forwarder performs or is requested to perform any service or which enters the freight forwarder’s storage facilities in connection with such service.
  • “vehicle’’ means, any motor vehicle (including but not limited to any lorry, van, trailer, crane, fork-lift truck or car) in respect of which the freight forwarder performs or is requested to perform any service or which enters the company’s depot in connection with such service.
  • “goods” means, cargo as well as transport units, pallets or similar articles of transport or packaging, in respect of which the freight forwarder provides or is requested to provide a service.
  • “goods of high value” shall include – but not be limited to – rotable aircraft parts, bullion, precious stones, bank notes or coins, bonds, negotiable instruments or securities of any kind, cigarettes, spirits, precious metal objects, precious jewellery, valuable works of art, antiques, historical artefacts & bloodstock and computers/hand-held electronic products/mobile phones and the electronic components of these;
  • “interface” means, as the context arises, either any point at which the responsibility for the packages is passed on to another operator/agent, or the ‘handing over’ point at the end of each stage of the transportation process;
  • “packages” means single packets or units of packets, formed by the principal for the purpose of being carried according to forwarding instructions, and may consist of, inter alia, boxes, pallets, handling units, enclosed loading units and other forms of containers;
  • “principal” means any entity and/or natural person at whose request or on whose behalf the freight forwarder undertakes any business or provides a service accordingly.
  • “SDR” means the Special Drawing Right as it is defined by the International Monetary Fund;
  • “consignee” means any entity and/or natural person to whom the package is to be delivered to whether by land, sea or air.

1.2. Wherever required by context, the use of the singular shall be construed to include the plural, and the use of the plural the singular, and the use of any gender shall include all genders;

The headings are for convenience only.

2. Duration and Applicability

2.1 This Agreement shall:

apply to any agreement between the parties or between the freight forwarder on the one hand and the principal on the other hand, with respect to the transportation of goods by way of freight forwarding, carriage, warehousing or any other method common to the forwarding trade in connection with the carriage or storage of goods.

For contracts of carriage by air, sea, inland waterways or for multimodal transports, different contractual arrangements may be made in accordance with the terms of carriage devised for these transports.

Miles Express shall, as the case may be, subcontract to third parties certain or all aspects connected to the services it provides pursuant to this Agreement, under such terms and conditions as it deems fit and proper in the circumstances.

In any relationship which might arise pursuant to this Agreement between a third party acting for the principal and the freight forwarder acting as a so-called “intermediary freight forwarder”, the freight forwarder shall endeavour to impose these terms and conditional upon such third party.

3. Obligations of the Principal as to Instructions

3.1 The principal shall give sufficient and executable instructions in writing wherever possible. Instructions are valid even if given informally, as long as supported by adequate evidence should the need arise.

Subsequent modifications must be specifically identifiable as being amendments. The burden of proof for correct and complete transmission lies with the party referring to it.

3.2 The principal shall inform the freight forwarder, at the time of giving the instructions, whenever the transport contract concerns dangerous goods, or live animals, or plants, or perishables, or valuable goods, or goods with an inherent risk of theft.

3.3 The principal must specify in its instructions addresses, marks, numbers, quantity, nature and contents of the packages as well as properties of the goods, the value of goods for insurance purposes and any other information relevant for the proper execution of the forwarding instructions. The principal warrants that the description and particulars of the goods and units are complete and correct and that the goods are labelled and marked in compliance with all laws, regulations and requirements which may be applicable.

3.4 In the case of dangerous goods, the principal shall inform the freight forwarder in writing – at the time of giving the instructions – on the exact nature of the hazard and, if appropriate, about precautionary measures to be taken in the circumstances. In the case of dangerous goods the carriage of which is subject to specific regulations regarding dangerous goods, their handling or disposal, the principal shall make all necessary declarations required for proper execution of the forwarding instruction, including an indication of the relative international classification of the dangerous goods in question as the case may be and of the specific regulations which are or could be applicable to such dangerous goods.

3.5 The principal shall inform the freight forwarder about goods of high value or goods with an inherent risk of theft (such as cash, precious metals, jewellery, clocks and watches, precious stones, works of art, antiquities, bank or credit cards, valid telephone cards or other means of payment, bonds, shares and similar, foreign currencies, documents, spirits, tobacco, entertainment electronics, electronic products, telecommunications devices and accessories and electronic components of these) and about goods with an actual value of €50 per kg or more well in advance, and this in order to enable the freight forwarder to decide about acceptance of the goods and the measures to be taken for a safe and secure execution of the forwarding job.

3.6 In order to facilitate proper handling, packages shall be clearly and durably marked by the principal as necessary, including indications such as – but not limited to – addresses, marks, numbers, symbols for handling and properties. The principal shall duly inform the freight forwarder in writing of any special precautions necessitated by the nature, weight or condition of the goods and of any statutory duties specific to the goods with which the freight forwarder must or is expected to comply.

3.7 Furthermore, the principal shall:

  1. warrant that he is the owner of the goods concerned or is duly authorized by such owner to accept these conditions for and on behalf of such owner
  2. ensure that old marks are either removed or rendered illegible;
  3. mark all packages belonging to the same consignment in such a way that they are easily recognised as forming one consignment;
  4. prepare packages in such a way that they may withstand normal handling and/or storage, not be accessed and/or the contents thereof removed, altered, damaged or replaced without leaving visible trace (adhesive tape and bands are only permissible when they are individually designed or otherwise difficult to imitate; foil wrapping must be thermally sealed);
  5. mark packing units with a gross weight of at least 1,000 kilograms with the weight specification as prescribed for heavy loads to be transported by ship.

3.8 In the event where a forwarding instruction does not comply with the terms stated in clauses 3.2 to 3.7, the freight forwarder has without prejudice to its rights at law, the following options at its choice, separately and, or cumulatively: – to refuse acceptance of the goods; – to return goods already accepted or make them available for collection; or – to ship, transport or store them without the need to notify the principal and to charge an extra, appropriate fee, if the safe and secure execution of the instruction causes extra costs.

The freight forwarder is not obliged to check or supplement the statements made regarding clauses 3.2 to 3.5, nor is it obliged to check the authenticity of signatures or the authority of signatories on any messages or documents relating to goods. Unless prior to acceptance of the goods by the freight forwarder, the freight forwarder receives written notice containing all appropriate information, none of the goods will be construed as being of their very nature or as to containing particular substances or goods.

4. Packaging, provision of loading and packaging aids, weighing and checking

4.1 Ordinary forwarding services provided by the freight forwarder do not cover:

  1. packaging of the goods;
  2. weighing, checking, measures to preserve or enhance the goods and its packaging, unless this is customary for this kind of transaction, all of which give rise to additional fees due in favour of the freight forwarder.

5. Customs Clearance

5.1 Instructions for shipment to a destination in another country include instructions for customs clearance, if this is necessary for arranging transport to the place of destination.

5.2 The freight forwarder is entitled to an additional fee for the customs clearance, over and above the actual costs incurred.

5.3 Instructions to forward bonded goods or to deliver them free house, authorizes the freight forwarder to affect the customs clearance and to advance any VAT, customs and excise duties and fees due in connection thereof and which the principal hereby undertakes to reimburse the freight forwarder in full.

6. Supervisory duties of the freight forwarder

6.1. At specific interfaces the freight forwarder is under the obligation to: check packages regarding their quantity, marks and apparent good order and whether seals and fastenings are intact; document irregularities (e.g. in the accompanying document or by special notification)

7. Receipt

7.1 Upon request by the principal, the freight forwarder shall issue a certificate of receipt, confirming the quantity and type of packages, but not their contents, value or weight. In the case of bulk goods, full loads and similar packages the certificate of receipt shall not state the gross weight or any other description of the quantity of the goods.

7.2 As proof of delivery the freight forwarder request from the consignee a receipt of the packages as named in the forwarding instruction or other accompanying transport documents. Should the consignee refuse to sign for the receipt of the goods, the freight forwarder shall request further instructions from the principal.

8. Instructions

8.1 Instructions remain valid for the freight forwarder throughout the transit period unless revoked by the principal within 24 hours from the original dispatch instructions.

8.2 In the case of insufficient or impractical instructions or in the case of lack of instructions the freight forwarder may use its own judgment.

8.3 Instructions to hold goods at the disposal of a third party may no longer be revoked once instructions from the third party have been received by the freight forwarder.

9. Deadlines & Obstacles

9.1 In the absence of specific agreement and without prejudice to the freight forwarder’s statutory obligations in the case of late delivery, neither loading nor delivery deadlines nor even the sequence of handling of goods are guaranteed.

9.2 Obstacles beyond the freight forwarder’s control relieve it, for their duration, from the duties that are affected by these obstacles. In such an event, both the freight forwarder as well as the principal may withdraw from the agreement even if part performance may have taken place, and in such an event the freight forwarder shall be entitled to recover costs deemed by it as necessary or which were incurred in the interest of the principal apart from any and all fees and/or other dues resulting in favour of the freight forwarder from such performance.

9.3 The freight forwarder is only obliged within the framework of its ordinary duties of care at law to advise the principal about legal or official restrictions concerning a particular shipment.

10. Delivery and Right to Information

10.1 Delivery shall be deemed to have been affected when the goods are handed over to any person present on the premises of the consignee.

10.2 The freight forwarder shall be bound to provide the principal with all necessary information, upon request, about the status of the transaction.

10.3 If the consignee refuses to accept a consignment, or if the delivery is impossible for reasons beyond the control of the freight forwarder, the freight forwarder is entitled to payment from the principal of the ensuing costs for return, removal and/or disposal of the consignment.

10.4 If at any time whatsoever, any goods constitute a risk to other goods, property, life or health in the opinion of the freight forwarder or any authority, such goods may without notice be destroyed or otherwise dealt with at the sole discretion of the freight forwarder and at the risk and expense of the principal.

11. Warehousing

11.1 The choice of location shall lie with the freight forwarder, and in any such case the principal shall be informed on warehouse address.

11.2 In the course of the provision of warehousing services, the freight forwarder shall exercise the duty of care of a bonus paterfamilias, and the principal shall be at liberty to inspect the warehousing facility during normal working hours – and in the presence of a representative – of the freight forwarder. In the case of an inspection, any objection or complaint shall be raised immediately and, in any case, not later than 24 hours from termination of the inspection and in writing. In the absence of any such inspection it shall be irrevocably assumed that the freight forwarder is warehousing the goods in accordance with its duty of care in terms of this agreement.

11.3 In the event where it is agreed that the principal may handle the goods, the freight forwarder shall be provided with full identification details of any individual authorized to access the warehouse on behalf of the principal for such purpose, as well as the number, weight and status of the goods so handled. In the event where incomplete or no information is given with regards to individual and goods so handled, under no account may the freight forwarder be held liable in any manner for any damage subsequently discovered.

11.4 The principal shall be liable for any and all damage which may be caused to the freight forwarder, other warehouse clients or third parties by any individual who may be present at the warehouse for the purposes of clause 11.3 herein.

11.5 In the event where an inventory of goods is taken and recorded by agreement between the principal and the freight forwarder, it shall be the responsibility of the freight forwarder to ensure safe keeping and release of said goods in accordance with instructions received from the principal.

11.6 At all times the principal shall ensure that the freight forwarder is given a true and accurate description of the value of all goods placed in its possession at the order of the principal.

12. Disbursements of the freight forwarder & exemption from third party claims

12.1 The freight forwarder is entitled to reimbursement for outlays which it may reasonably consider appropriate incurred in connection with this agreement.

12.2 The instruction to accept incoming consignments entitles – but does not oblige – the freight forwarder to advance freight, ‘cash on delivery’ sums, duties, taxes and other dues of the principal in connection with such consignments and which the principal hereby undertakes to reimburse the freight forwarder in full.

12.3 Without prejudice to the other clauses of this agreement the principal has to relieve the freight forwarder immediately of demands regarding freight, average, customs duties, taxes or other dues directed against the freight forwarder as agent for or possessor of the goods owned by the principal or held by the principal on behalf of the owner thereof.

12.4 The principal shall inform the freight forwarder in a complete manner with respect to all matters applicable at law and arising out of possession by the freight forwarder of the goods, and in this respect the principal shall indemnify and hold harmless the freight forwarder with regard to any and all actions which may be brought against the freight forwarder by any one or more third parties. The obligations of the principal arising in terms of this clause 12.4 shall be considered as obligations of utmost good faith / ‘uberrimae fidei’

13. Payment Terms

13.1 Payment terms shall be in line with and as agreed between the principal and the freight forwarder in their respective rate agreement contract.

14. Insurance

14.1 The freight forwarder is obliged to cover, at going market rates, its transport-related liability and standard liabilities with an insurer of its choice and, if requested by the principal, the freight forwarder shall provide proof of this insurance cover.

14.2 When instructed by the principal within a reasonable time prior to delivery of goods to the freight forwarder in a given case or cases the freight forwarder shall, wherever possible, obtain appropriate insurance coverage over the goods with a reputable insurer of its own choice: provided that in the event where despite the freight forwarder’s efforts it shall not be possible to procure insurance cover according to circumstances, the freight forwarder shall inform the principal forthwith.

15. Right of Retention

15.1 In addition and without prejudice to its statutory rights, the freight forwarder shall be entitled to retain any goods of the principal which may be in its possession until such time as outstanding amounts due by the principal in excess of 30 days are satisfied in full, and in this respect the principal shall not be entitled to any claim otherwise arising for late delivery of goods.

16. Liability and Limitation of Liability

To the extent that the freight forwarder undertakes or arranges for the carriage of Goods, Units and Services connected therewith, the provisions of these terms & conditions shall be paramount, subject that if any legislation to include regulations and directives, and/or any International Conventions regulating the international carriage of goods by road, sea and air is compulsory applicable to any business undertaken, these conditions shall, as regards such business, be read as subject to such legislation and nothing in these conditions shall be construed as a surrender by the freight forwarder of any of his rights or immunities or as an increase of any of his responsibilities or liabilities under such legislation, and if any part of these terms and conditions be repugnant to such legislation to any extent, such part shall as regards such business be overridden to that extent and no further.

The freight forwarder shall not be liable for any loss and/or damage, whether sustained in the course of transit or whilst in temporary storage, to the Goods and Units as defined above, relating to delays, duty, tax, rent, charges or demurrages or consequential loss, non-performance of any obligation, mis-delivery, misdirection, costs, expense, death or injury of whatsoever nature and howsoever caused except as specified in this article.

Subject to the exclusions of liability in these conditions, to the extent that it is proved that the claim arises from the negligence of the freight forwarder, its servants, agents or sub-contractors, the freight forwarder shall be liable for the type of loss or damage set out below subject to the financial limits stated as follows:

  1. Physical loss of or damage to Goods, but not exceeding the lesser of the value of the Goods lost, or the reasonable cost of repair in the case of damage, or 2 Special Drawing Rights per kilogram of the gross weight of the Goods lost or damaged.
  2. Misdirection of the Goods but not exceeding the lesser of: the cost of transporting the Goods to the correct destination by the mode of transport that would have applied in the absence of such misdirection less the cost that would have been incurred in transporting the Goods to the correct destination in the absence of such misdirection, or the value of the Goods misdirected, or 2 Special Drawing Rights per kilogram of the Goods misdirected. Loss of or damage as a direct result of failure to deliver or arrange delivery of goods, in a reasonable time but not exceeding the lesser of the sum equal to twice the amount freight that would have been earned by the freight forwarder, or the value of the goods, or 2 Special Drawing Rights per kilogram of the goods.

Physical loss of or damage to the principal’s owned or leased Unit or Vehicles, but not exceeding the lesser of the value of the Unit or Vehicle, or the reasonable cost of repair in the case of physical damage, or 2 Special Drawing Rights per kilogram.

Physical loss of or damage to property of any form other than listed above, but not exceeding the lesser of the value of the property lost, or the reasonable cost of repair in the case of damage, or 2 Special Drawing Rights per kilogram each event or events arising from a common cause.

In the case of all other claims not exceeding the lesser of:

  1. the amount of direct loss, or
  2. 75,000 Special Drawing Rights,

The freight forwarder shall not in any circumstances whatsoever be liable for indirect or consequential loss such as (but not limited to) loss of profit or loss of market.

For the purposes of this Article:

  1. the value of Goods shall mean the invoice value added to the cost of freight (if paid) and insurance (if applicable) plus any Customs Duty or tax incurred on the Goods in respect of their carriage and not recoverable from any Authority or, in the absence of such value, the market value at the place where the freight forwarder received the Goods;
  2. the value of the principal’s Unit or Vehicle shall be taken to be its lease value if leased by the principal and if owned by the principal the value shall be taken to be the market value at the place where the loss or damage occurred;
  3. the value of property under is the market value at the place where the loss or damage occurred.

The freight forwarder shall not incur any liability whatsoever for claims arising from:

  1. any act or omission of the principal or owner or any person acting on their behalf,
  2. any acts of the freight forwarder conforming with the instructions given by or on behalf of the principal or Owner,
  3. the act or order of any Authority,
  4. insufficiency or inadequate packaging or labelling of the Goods or Units except where such services have been provided by the freight forwarder,
  5. the handling, loading, stowage or unloading of the Goods by the principal or Owner or any person acting on their behalf,
  6. the nature of the Goods,
  7. the defective or overweight condition of Units or Vehicles
  8. riots, civil commotions, strikes, lockouts, stoppage or restraint of labour,
  9. explosion, fire, flood or storm,
  10. breakdown of or failure of any handling equipment of the freight forwarder,
  11. breakdown of, accident to, failure or interruption of or reduction in the mains electrical supply to the freight forwarder, it is hereby being agreed that the freight forwarder is under no obligation whatsoever to have available an auxiliary Power supply,
  12. any cause which the freight forwarder could not avoid and the consequences whereof it could not prevent by the exercise of reasonable diligence.

The principal shall defend, indemnify and hold harmless the freight forwarder from and against all claims, costs and demands whatsoever and by whomsoever made or preferred in excess of the liability of the freight forwarder under the terms of these conditions and without prejudice to the generality of this article this indemnity shall also cover all claims, costs and demands arising from or in connection with the service hereby being rendered by the freight forwarder on behalf and/or on the instructions of the principal as well as those arising from or in connection with the negligence of the freight forwarder, its servants and agents.

17. Miscellaneous

17.1 The defences and limits of liability provided for by these conditions shall apply in any action against the freight forwarder and each exclusion and liability in these conditions exists separately and cumulatively.

17.2 No servants or agents of the freight forwarder shall have power to waive or vary any of the terms hereof unless such waiver or variation is in writing and is specifically authorized or ratified in writing by a director or officer of the freight forwarder who has the actual authority of the freight forwarder so to waive or vary.

17.3 No waiver, alteration, variation or addition to the Agreement shall be effective unless made in writing on or after the date of signature of this Agreement and signed by all parties.

17.4 Any matter not specifically regulated by this agreement, shall be governed by the applicable Laws of Malta.

17.5 The interpretation, construction, effect and enforceability of this Agreement shall be governed by Maltese law, and the parties agree to submit to the jurisdiction of the Maltese Courts or to arbitration in Malta in terms of the relevant provisions of Maltese law.

17.6 The freight forwarder shall be discharged of all liability:

  1. in respect of loss or damage at the freight forwarder’s premises of any unit and/or vehicle, unless written notice of such loss or damage is received within five working days of the date when such unit and/or vehicle left the freight forwarder’s premises or, if lost, when such unit and/or vehicle should have left the freight forwarders depot
  2. in respect of all claims, unless received within fifteen (15) days from the date of delivery of the goods to the principal, suit is brought against the principal in the proper forum and written notice thereof received by the principal.

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