FIDIC contracts (pre-2017 editions)—Yellow and Silver Books compared
FIDIC contracts (pre-2017 editions)—Yellow and Silver Books compared

The following Construction guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • FIDIC contracts (pre-2017 editions)—Yellow and Silver Books compared
  • What types of projects are the contracts suitable for?
  • Design/Employer’s Requirements
  • Contract administration
  • Risk profile
  • Contract price and payment
  • Claims
  • Disputes
  • Testing
  • Loss or damage to property

This Practice Note looks at the Conditions of Contract for Plant and Design Build 1999 (commonly referred to as the FIDIC Yellow Book 1999), and the Conditions of Contract for EPC/Turnkey Projects 1999 (the FIDIC Silver Book 1999). Both contracts are intended for use where the Contractor, as opposed to the Employer, is carrying out the design of the Works but there are some key differences, which are described in this Practice Note.

For a more detailed look at the individual contracts, see Practice Notes: FIDIC contracts—introduction to the Yellow Book 1999 and FIDIC contracts—introduction to the Silver Book 1999.

New editions of the Yellow and Silver Books were published in December 2017. For more information, see Practice Note: FIDIC contracts 2017—what’s changed? [Archived].

What types of projects are the contracts suitable for?

While both the contracts envisage that the Contractor will be responsible for carrying out all or the vast majority of the design, and both are fixed price 'lump sum' contracts, that is not to say that they are both suitable for the same types of projects. Broadly speaking, the key difference is that in the Silver Book, the Contractor takes on more risk than it does in the Yellow Book, and would expect to be paid a higher price in return. The Employer has less day to day involvement