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New contract meets changing needs


'MEETING THE needs of a changing industry' was the message delivered by ICE chief executive Mike Casebourne this week as he launched the new 7th Edition Conditions of Contract.

The latest version of the ICE's traditional form of contract, he said, not only incorporates a host of recent legislative changes, but also takes account of initiatives such as working in partnership and reducing conflict.

'The industry has moved on and is trying to work in a less adversarial manner than before,' he said. 'The changes promoted by the recent Egan report are reflected to a degree in this new contract.'

Casebourne insisted that it was vital to maintain and update the ICE's family of contracts despite the emergence of new forms such as the New Engineering Contract. 'It is up to the client to choose which form of contract to use. We feel that by offering both contracts we have two excellent alternatives.'

Chairman of the Conditions of Contract Joint Drafting Committee David Hodgkinson emphasised that, although the new contract was built on tried and tested principles established by the ICE form of contract since its first issue in 1945, the latest replaced all previous editions rather than supplementing them.

He added that it now incorporated new clauses rewritten with regard to new legislation and the Latham and Egan initiatives so that it now 'fully supports and promotes the benefits of teamworking and current procurement initiatives'.

The main changes from the 6th Edition include:

clarification and standardisation of wording using plain English were appropriate.

new clauses on payment and dispute resolution in accordance with the Construction Act.

change in emphasis on rights of parties when employing sub-contractors.

provision of information clauses changed to prevent unfair withholding of information and reduce potential disputes.

extension of time clauses amended to take account of employers' default.

bond is rewritten to update the language and terminology used and comply with the needs of the insurance and banking industries.

contract price fluctuation clauses altered and updated.

Guidance notes are available to accompany the new form of contract.

It sits alongside the ICE's family of contract documents including the Design and Construct contract, Minor Works contract, Dispute Resolution guidance,

the ACE Terms of Engagement and the CECA Form of Subcontract

The ICE plans to hold roadshows around UK local associations to encourage the transition to the new form of contract. For further information contact the ICE on (0171) 222 7722.

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