This chapter will set the background of the topic, the argument of the work together with the legal framework and the outline of the book. In particular this chapter establishes the foundation for a profound evaluation of the third party protection framework. It highlights the importance of perceiving third party protection through a modern, commercial lens, appropriate to the industry today.

This chapter contends that, in contrast to current approaches, the framework of third party protection should not be based on the central role of the carrier and shipper in the carriage of goods by sea. The role of third parties in the carriage of goods by sea today is very different from the past, but the protection afforded to third parties by the law has not changed commensurately.