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After adopting the Protocol to the Convention on Limitation of Liability for Maritime Claims in 2000, Norway denounced the convention in 2005. Norway made a reservation for claims for removal of wreck and cargo, and incorporated a new limitation regime for such claims. The limitation amounts for passenger claims and damage caused by oil platforms were increased with effect from the same date.
The system for the protection of mortgagee interest under the Marine Insurance Plan has remained largely unchanged since the 1964 edition of the plan. Among other things, the interest of mortgagees is automatically co-assured under the owner's insurances. Notification of the mortgage by the mortgagee to the insurer is not required in order for automatic co-insurance to take effect.
The Standard Form Norwegian Shipbuilding Contract 2000 is now widely used inside and outside Norway. This update explains the reasons for its success and comments on the benefits of using Norwegian shipbuilding contracts.
Following a three-year insurance battle, a court has held that the engine of the Helene was defective before the casualty and was thus not covered by insurance under the Marine Insurance Plan. The court criticized the shipowner for withholding information on the seriousness of the cracks. The decision shows that the Norwegian courts will not look lightly on attempts to withhold evidence in insurance disputes.
Shipowners seeking additional tonnage are increasingly looking for second-hand vessels to be converted to meet their demands. Moreover, owners must convert their vessels to meet new regulatory requirements (eg, the phasing out of single-hull vessels). Conversion projects give rise to a host of risks for shipowners, yards and financing banks, which must be considered when preparing a conversion contract.