Always act in good faith....

On the 8th of January 1897 the Association was founded by a gathering of 44 Hamburg ship brokers. Their main motivation was the great strike of the dock workers in Hamburg. In order to stand up for their interests and those of their principals the ship brokers decided to speak with one voice.

Mr. J.A. Edye of Rob. M. Sloman jr. was elected chairman. He urged the members never to stray from the straight and narrow.

The first official act of the new Hamburg Shipbrokers’ Association (VHSS) was to send a circular to all ship owners in Germany and abroad. That letter not only recommended the member companies as trustworthy business partners, but also informed the shipowners of the practices of certain Hamburg stevedoring companies, which had developed some dubious business practices in the preceding years, leading in some cases to vastly excessive charges. The interest of the Hamburg ship brokers then as now was to make their port as cost-effective and efficient as possible.

Also today, it is easy to damage a trust, but difficult and time-consuming to regain it. Therefore the board of the freshly merged Shipbrokers`Associations, the Hamburg and Bremen Shipbrokers´Assocaition (VHBS) encourages the members in Bremen and Hamburg to follow the principles that are specified in the following Code of Conduct.

Code of Conduct: Hamburg and Bremen Shipbrokers´Association 2018  (VHBS)

based on the FONASBA Code of Conduct October 1998, revised October 2008

VHBS     has as one of its primary objectives, the promotion among its members of a fair and

             equitable practice of the professions of ship broker and ship agent.

VHBS     is urging all members to achieve and maintain the highest professional standards. 

VHBS     has for that purpose laid down the following principles.


Members shall at all times:

1. act in accordance with all national laws and other regulations of the countries in which they


2. adhere strictly to the principles of honesty and integrity,

3. operate in a sound and honourable financial manner,

4. ensure that all the principal’s business being handled is dealt with in confidence,

5. co-operate with and contribute to the efforts of the appropriate authorities to combat all illegal

    activities such as, but not limited to, maritime fraud and the trade in banned drugs,

6. agree to provide every assistance to the principal and the master of the vessel in ensuring, so far

    as possible and subject to the limits of responsibility of the agent, that the vessel’s statutory

    obligations to appropriate and relevant national, regional and international authorities are

    discharged in an orderly and timely manner.

7. ensure that all activities are carried out honestly within the highest standards of professional


8. take great care to avoid any misrepresentation and ensure that all activities are subject to the

    principles of honesty and fair dealing.


Hamburg, December 2018