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Date: 13/02/2013
Shipping Freight Broker: A General Overview

A broker is a businessman who buys or sells for another in exchange for a commission. On similar lines, a ship cargo freight broker is a businessman who acts as an agent between people wanting ships to transport the cargo they possess and cargo ship owners.

Ship cargo freight brokering is a highly competitive field and as such a shipping freight broker is a much sought after professional in the shipping cargo business. A ship cargo freight broker might be operating on an individual basis or he might be a part of a professional organisation which has many such shipping freight brokers in its rosters.

There are several pointers that a cargo broker needs to keep in mind in order to make sure that the best results for his client in terms of the shipping cargo transaction are obtained. A few of the same can be enumerated below:

  • The shipping freight broker’s primary interest needs to be vested in his client i.e. the person/people in need of cargo ships 
  • This said the freight shipping brokers need to ensure that the deal that gets cut out between the clients and the ship owners is transparent and the client does not get cheated in any way. The ship’s reliability and overall utility needs to be the first lookout for the cargo broker as any problems in these two areas could lead to a massive loss to his client and ultimately to the broker himself
  • If the cargo ship freight broker is satisfied with all the elements of the prospective deal, then he prepares what is known as the Charter Party. In essence, this document states all the necessary terms and conditions to the deal and must be signed by both parties to the aforesaid transaction
  • It becomes the shipping freight broker’s responsibility and duty to be aware of the currently prevailing market scenario in the area of cargo shipping. If by any chance, there is a lack of knowledge on the broker’s part, then he is expected to gain the requisite through fellow agents employed in the profession. This is so because any lack of knowledge on the broker’s part would lead to a loss for his client. The client’s trust in the broker’s vouching as an established professional is faulted, as a resulting consequence
  • The commission to the broker is paid by the cargo owner

Ship cargo freight brokers are a part of a huge industry which is growing and developing every day. As such their skill also needs to widen to suit the enhancement of the whole cargo shipping arena. Ultimately, only brokers who successfully enhance and widen the scope of their knowledge about the profession along with the subtleties and nuances that it carries will be able to thrive in this unique and singular profession.

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