Our team advise clients on the use and implementation of FIDIC contracts - the most widely used form in engineering and construction internationally.
What does FIDIC stand for?
Fédération Internationale des Ingénieurs-Conseils, is an association of international consulting engineers, which has produced standard forms of contract for civil engineering projects since 1957.
What is the FIDIC family of contracts?
The Red Book 1999/2017: Conditions of contract for construction. The Red Book provides contract conditions for construction works where the Employer provides the design. There are also accompanying Conditions of Subcontract for Construction 2011. Occasionally, the FIDIC Red Book 4th edition (1987) is used.
The Pink Book 2005/2006/2010: MDB harmonised edition This streamlines the FIDIC contract for Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs), their borrowers, and other project procurement stakeholders such as consulting engineers, contractors, and contract attorneys.
The Yellow Book 1999/2017: Conditions of contract for plant and design-build. This is used for electrical and mechanical plants, and for building works. It is designed by the Contractor rather than the Employer. There are also accompanying Conditions of Subcontract for Plant and Design-Build (2019).
The Silver Book 1999/2017: Conditions of contract for EPC/turnkey projects. This is used for turnkey provision of process or power plants, factories and/or infrastructure projects where the Contractor will assume complete responsibility for the project's design and execution.
The Green Book 1999/2021: Short form of contract. Published in 2021, the second edition of the FIDIC Green Book is primarily intended ‘for projects where the perceived level of risk is low, and/or where construction parties wish to use a form which is simple to use and does not require significant contract administration and management resources’. Its use is not restricted to simple or repetitive works and/or short duration and/or limited capital value projects. The Green Book is an alternative to the FIDIC Red or Yellow Book 2017.
The Emerald Book 2019: Conditions of contract for underground works.
The Blue-Green Book 2006/2016: Form of contract for dredging and reclamation works.
The Gold Book 2008: DBO contract - conditions for design, build and operation projects.
The Orange Book 1995: Conditions of contract for design-build and turnkey projects.
The White Book 2017: Client-consultant agreement.
Sub-Consultancy Agreement 2017.
Model Joint Venture (Consortium) Agreement 2017.
NB: The Red, Yellow and Silver books are often referred to as the 'Rainbow suite'
Who are FIDIC contracts for?
Employers, engineers, contractors, adjudicators, arbitrators, and construction professionals, as well as solicitors and barristers.
Why use FIDIC contracts?
The FIDIC forms of contract are the industry standard for international construction and engineering works. They provide contract templates that can be applied to almost any project and in the majority of jurisdictions.
They are considered to have a fair and balanced risk allocation as between the parties and are adaptable for each project. Like all standard forms, they need to be adapted to the particular circumstances of the project. Employers, engineers and contractors must take care when disputes arise and ensure they follow these specific contractual requirements.
FIDIC contracts and dispute resolution
FIDIC has a multi-tier dispute resolution procedure consisting of four tiers:
- the Engineer (who first seeks to get the parties to reach an agreement taking on a mediator role, failing which a determination is issued)
- a dispute board (one or three members are appointed as either standing or ad-hoc dispute boards)
- amicable settlement (the parties seek to negotiation settlement based on the dispute board’s decision)
- arbitration (the default favoured by FIDIC is currently ICC arbitration).
Howard Kennedy's international construction team has extensive experience in supporting clients throughout the process.
Why use us?
We are experts on FIDIC and have been involved in drafting several of the FIDIC forms of contract. Edward Corbett was a member of the FIDIC Task Group responsible for drafting the FIDIC Blue Book 2006, the FIDIC Green Book 1999, and the FIDIC Conditions of Subcontract for Construction for use with the 1999 Red Book.
Edward Corbett is the author of “FIDIC 4th: A Practical Legal Guide” published in 1991 and our lawyers authored "FIDIC 2017: A Practical Legal Guide" published in 2020.
We have also published numerous articles on all FIDIC forms of contract.