FORCE MAJEURE - The title of a standard clause in marine contracts exempting the parties for non-fulfillment of their obligations as a result of conditions beyond their control, such as earthquakes, floods, or war. See “Act of God.”
FREE TRADE ZONE - A port designated by the government of a country for duty-free entry of any non-prohibited goods. Merchandise may be stored, displayed, used for manufacturing, etc., within the zone and re-exported without duties being paid. Duties are imposed on the merchandise (or items manufactured from the merchandise) only when the goods pass from the zone into an area of the country subject to the Customs Authority. Also called FOREIGN TRADE ZONE.
FREIGHT - The money charged by the carrier for transporting goods.
FREIGHT FORWARDERS - Companies that buy space in large quantities and sell it to shippers requiring less vessel space. Also perform many other services for shippers including preparation of export documentation and arranging for cargo insurance.
GENERAL AVERAGE (G.A.) - Ancient principle of equity in which all parties in a sea adventure (ship, cargo, and freight) proportionately share losses resulting from a voluntary and successful sacrifice of part of the ship or cargo to save the whole adventure from an impending peril, or extraordinary expenses necessarily incurred for the joint benefit of ship and cargo.
GENERAL AVERAGE SECURITY - Documents the cargo owner presents to the General Average Adjuster to replace the vessel owner’s maritime lien on cargo for its share of General Average and to obtain release of the goods by the Steamship Company. G.A. Security consists of a G.A. Bond and either a cash deposit or an Underwriter’s Guarantee.
GOODS - Cargo shipped by sea or air.
GOODS IN TRANSIT - Goods moving between two points.