Maltese Merchant Shipping Act | Papilio Services Limited

Maltese Merchant Shipping Act

The Amendments to the Maltese Merchant Shipping Act

Malta has a long and varied maritime tradition and operates a recognised and reputable open register for ships, bareboat charters and mortgages which has become one of the largest registers in the world.

The advantages of the Malta flag include being on the White List of the Paris and Tokyo MoUs and on the Low Risk Ship List of the Paris MoU, no nationality restrictions for master, officers and crew and a well organised and highly responsive flag Administrations. Tax exemptions and benefits are available for owners, operators, charterers and financiers of ships flying the Malta flag.

The Maltese Minister for Transport and Infrastructure has published regulations making changes to the Maltese provisions in an effort to further streamline the registration process and the provision of ancillary services. The changes took effect from 1 July 2016.

The changes include the following:

  • After the first 12 months of registration, a Certificate of Malta Registry and its Renewal Certificate may be issued with a validity period of a maximum of 5 years, in respect of ships of 500 Gross Tons and over
  • A Certificate of Malta Registry may be issued in the name of a Lessee
  • Owners and Registered Mortgagees may withdraw their consent where a Certificate of Malta Registry has been issued in the name of the Charterer or Lessee
  • Ships with a Non-Operational Certificate may be authorised by the Registry to have sea trials

Ships must be in possession of all relevant valid international statutory certificates at all times for a Certificate of Malta Registry to be issued and valid. Furthermore, a Certificate of Malta Registry or its Renewal Certificate shall only remain valid if payment of all relevant annual registration fees is made by the anniversary of the initial registration (and on an annual basis).

For more information regarding the above, or with regard to any other aspect of the Malta International Ship Register, please contact us to further assist you.