FIDIC Golden Principles (2019) Explained

FIDIC Golden Principles

In the intricate world of construction projects, the foundation of a successful venture lies in the clarity, fairness, and balance of the contract between all parties involved. The FIDIC Golden Principles (GPs) serve as a beacon, guiding stakeholders through the complexities of contractual agreements. These principles ensure that the rights, obligations, and roles of each participant are well-defined and aligned with the project’s unique requirements, fostering an environment of cooperation and mutual respect.

GP1: Aligning Roles and Responsibilities

The first principle emphasizes that the duties, rights, obligations, roles, and responsibilities of contract participants should align with the General Conditions (GCs) while being tailored to the project’s specific needs. This principle is crucial for maintaining the integrity of each party’s expected contributions and ensures that the contract reflects the project’s reality. For instance, an employer must fulfil payment obligations without being influenced by external financial arrangements, ensuring that contractors are not unjustly deprived of their rights, such as receiving payments on time or being able to suspend work if necessary.

GP2: Clarity in Particular Conditions

The second principle stresses the importance of drafting Particular Conditions (PCs) in a clear and unambiguous manner. This clarity prevents misunderstandings and conflicts, ensuring that any amendments or additions to the GCs are easily identifiable and understood. It is essential for maintaining the integrity of the contractual agreement and ensuring that all parties are on the same page regarding their responsibilities and expectations.

GP3: Maintaining Risk/Reward Balance

The third principle is about preserving the balance of risk and reward as established in the GCs. Altering this balance through PCs can lead to disputes and dissatisfaction, undermining the project’s success. For example, transferring the risk of unforeseeable conditions to the contractor without appropriate compensation disrupts this balance and is against the principle of fair risk allocation.

GP4: Reasonable Timeframes

The fourth principle advocates for reasonable durations for contract participants to fulfil their obligations. This principle ensures that timeframes for completing tasks or resolving disputes are fair and feasible, respecting the complexities and challenges inherent in construction projects. It prevents unrealistic expectations that can strain relationships and derail project timelines.

GP5: Dispute Resolution Mechanisms

The final principle underlines the importance of having a Dispute Avoidance/Adjudication Board (DAAB) or a Dispute Adjudication Board (DAB) as a first step in resolving conflicts before escalating to arbitration. This principle ensures that disputes are managed efficiently and fairly, preserving the project’s progress and the relationships between stakeholders.


The FIDIC Golden Principles offer a roadmap for drafting and managing contracts in construction projects, emphasizing clarity, fairness, and mutual respect. By adhering to these principles, stakeholders can navigate the complexities of construction contracts, ensuring that the project progresses smoothly and successfully. These principles not only facilitate a better understanding and cooperation among the parties involved but also significantly contribute to the timely and within-budget completion of construction projects. Here’s a link to the FIDIC Golden Principles in full.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More To Explore