13 октября 2013

Another Agent

Not quite sure about the whole world but I bet that every shipping agent in our region (Azov / Black sea / E.Med.) is pretty good aware of this fabulous hero, a natural bête noire...

[pic unrelated. A Turkish vessel unmooring at Odessa port]
Another Agent is the main character of an ancient legend widely spread in shipping community, mainly between operation managers in Turkey, sometimes also in Greece, Bulgaria and Arabic countries like Egypt or Syria. Briefly, it's a magic creature definitely more powerful and useful than Cin (= Turkish for Jinn).

Nobody ever saw him in the flesh but any shipowner will heatedly persuade you of his reality.

...You may provide the cheapest proforma D/A ever (dumping as low as working out of pocket) but Another Agent’s one will always be, like, 500 bucks cheaper. No doubt. Just believe it.

...Whatever you are requested to do, whoever is asking whatsoever  — Another Agent used to do it before (and still ready to do again) faster, cheaper and better than you would ever do. Anyway.

...Another Agent has unlimited staff, cars pool, spare time, financial abilities and power (yes, I mean infinite influence upon all port authorities). He’s the only one able to have the vessel berthed always upon arrival, the whole crew changed, sick crew treated & recovered, ship's mail custom cleared and delivered, cash to master, provision and FW supplied, bunkering with MGO, IFO and luboil arranged, quickest cargo ops provided, all PSC issues amicably settled, several «17-s» and «30-s» luckily rectified, vessel re-flagged, Register inspection conducted, overtimes avoided, bribes rejected, claims discarded, NOR accepted antedated, SOF drawn up most loyally; all of it — during a few hours only, without any advance notification and:
  • cheaper than you can even imagine (just for the sake of good co-op and for a few rumpled bucks of miserable agency fee. Or even free of charge at all — as an open-hearted sponsorship for a poor Owner suffering low market);
  • cashless (no SWIFTs or payment orders are necessary, just a word of mouth);
  • credited for unlimited time. Seriously. No repeated reminders, no legal proceedings, no detentions. Ever.
...Port authorities demand pre-payment of disbursement prior to vessel's sailing? No problem for Another Agent. He will eagerly offer to cover all port dues with his own funds — even for some new unknown partners working with him for the first time.
Dear shipping agents! You can work hard for years, striving for perfection. You can build a company with absolutely splendid client-oriented service. You can perform your duties over your head — but be sure, Another Agent will always be a few steps ahead.

Just relax and accept it.

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