What is FIDIC?

FIDIC is an acronym of  Fédération Internationale Des Ingénieurs-Conseils which is a French sentence meaning International Federation of Consulting Engineers. FIDIC was founded in 1913 by three countries; Belgium, France and Switzerland. FIDIC is located at the World Trade Center in Geneva Switzerland. It is run mostly by volunteers. FIDIC is well known in the consulting engineering for its work in defining Conditions of Contract for Civil Engineering and Construction. The FIDIC forms are the most widely used forms of contract internationally, including by the World Bank for its projects.

Primary goal of FIDIC is to standardize best practices of contracts for consulting engineers worldwide. It publishes standard forms of contracts for clients, consultants, sub-consultants and joint ventures together with contract related materials such as standard pre-qualification form, performance guarantee form, letter of acceptance etc. Currently FIDIC membership covers 98 countries. 

Objectives of FIDIC

An international regulatory authority to provide solutions and standards related to consulting engineers

To provide consulting engineers with the resources needed for their better image and reputation

To conduct trainings, seminars and to provide published material to young professionals to develop consulting engineering industry

Provide the consulting engineers with standard forms of contract and other related documents like standard pre-qualification form, performance guarantee form, letter of acceptance etc.

Promote and assist the worldwide development of viable consulting engineering industries.

FIDIC family of contracts 

In 1999, FIDIC published a ‘Rainbow Suite’ of new contracts with many improvements. In these new forms of contract, main clauses were significantly reduced from over 70 to just 20. This suite includes:

  • the Red Book: Conditions of Contract for Construction for Building and Engineering Works Designed by the Employer
  • the Yellow Book: Conditions of Contract for Plant and Design-Build
  • the Silver Book: Conditions of Contract for EPC/Turnkey Projects
  • the Green Book: Conditions of Short Form of Contract

Additional forms of contract in use since 1999 include:

  • the Blue Book: Contract for Dredging and Reclamation Works
  • MDB/FIDIC Contract: FIDIC conditions incorporated in the standard bidding documents of multilateral development banks
  • the White Book: Client/Consultant Model Services Agreement
  • the Gold Book: FIDIC Design, Build and Operate Projects
An Overview of the Red Book: Conditions of Contract for Construction

FIDIC conditions of contract for Construction (the Red Book) is a widely used contract document for parties involved in any kind of a construction project. It is divided into two parts. General conditions of contract and particular conditions of contract. The Red Book is to be used where the employer is responsible for the design of the works. It is intended to be used in the contract type in which employer and the contractor will agree in their contract the rates for types of work and those rates will be applied to the quantity of that work that the contractor carries out. The employer takes the risk that the quantities it estimates will be more or less accurate, while the contractor must ensure that its unit prices for the quantities are adequate.

General Conditions of Contract

General conditions of contract are to be applied to every project without altering them in any case whatsoever. For example, right of the employer to access the site, engineer’s duties and authority, priority of documents, program and revise program to be submitted by the contractor, methods of measurements etc. There are total of 20 main clauses in general conditions of contract which are further divided into several subclauses. 

First four clauses of the red book includes general provisions and roles and responsibilities of the Employer, Engineer and the Contractor. 5th clause contains rules of nomination and payments to the sub contractors. 6th clause is for management and rights of the staff and labor. 7th clause includes acceptance and rejection rules of plants, materials and workmanship. 8th clause is important which includes rules for commencement, delays and suspension of works. Rest of the clauses include tests on completion, employer’s taking over, defects liability, measurement and evaluation, variations and adjustments, contract price and payment, termination by employer, suspension and termination by contractor, risk and responsibility, insurance, force majeure and finally claims disputes and arbitration.

Particular Conditions of Contract

Particular conditions are project specific and can be specified according to nature and need of the project. For example who will be the Engineer, who will be the Employer, what will be the language etc. 

CONCLUSION

FIDIC is an international federation of consulting engineers with goal to standardize best practices of contracts for consulting engineers worldwide. FIDIC is well known in the consulting engineering for its work in defining Conditions of Contract for Construction. which is also called the Red Book. FIDIC publishes standard forms of contract for clients, consultants, sub-consultants and joint ventures together with contract related materials such as standard pre-qualification form, performance guarantee form, letter of acceptance etc. The effective administration of a FIDIC construction contract is essential to ensure that time and money claims are protected.

Muhammad Abdul Wajid Rai

Hey! I am Abdul Wajid. I am a Civil Engineer and have done Masters in Project Management. I have served for about 7 years in Planning, Execution, Monitoring and Controlling of large and complex projects. I have conducted a lot of trainings and workshops on Project Management and Primavera P6 software.

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