510. Magellan Spirit ApS v Vitol SA [2016] EWHC 454 (Comm)

Anti – suit injunction – Agency effected by doctrine of undisclosed principal – to be tested by objective criteria – incorporation of Charter Party containing English jurisdiction clause not effected by general words.

The Facts

A Swiss company, supplier, entered into a long term contract to supply LNG to a South Korean power company. To service the contract, the supplier procured a Bermudan company in the same group of companies (the Charterers) to enter into a three year time charter with the owners of the vessel.

Seven voyages were successfully completed.

On the eighth voyage, the vessel grounded after leaving Bonny, Nigeria, with a cargo of LNG.

The grounding and subsequent delay had two consequences: the supplier could not meet its obligations under the supply contract and had to sell the cargo at a loss; and, the charterer redelivered the vessel prematurely, alleging that the vessel had been off-hire for too long.

The supplier sued the owners in Nigeria based on a bill of lading in which it was named as the consignee.

Six months later, the owners sued the Charterers in London for breach of the time charter party and, at the same time, sought an order to stop the proceedings in Nigeria.

Findings

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