Aircraft Registration in Malta

Malta Aircraft Registration has become popular in recent time as there are several attractive benefits. The Maltese government has taken steps to create a framework that improves aircraft standards and aircraft operator licensing. This has lead to Malta becoming a hub for aviation.

Our qualified Malta Tax Advisors seek to maximise all of the opportunities available to you from the initial planning stages through to the commencement and continuation of services.

Malta Aircraft Registration Act

The Malta Aircraft Registration Act came into force in 2010 intending to regulate the registration of aircraft as well as the registration and enforcement of aircraft mortgages. The Malta Aircraft Registration Act also aims to implement the Cape Town Convention and the aircraft protocol with Maltese law.

Download the Aircraft Registration Act Cap. 503

What are the advantages of Aircraft Registration in Malta?

Aircraft registration in Malta has several tax benefits given to the owner of the plane. Here are some of the main advantages:

  1. An attractive Corporate Tax System in Malta
    1. Malta Tax Refund System allows for international tax planning opportunities by reducing the effective tax rate to 5% for trading companies.
    2. Malta Participation Exemption is the relief from taxation for a shareholder in a company on dividends and capital gains received from the sale of shares.
    3. No withholding tax on lease payments where the lessor is not a tax resident of Malta
  2. Malta has an extensive network of double tax treaties with over 70 jurisdictions, including the United States. See the full list here
  3. The aircraft leasing VAT programme can help reduce the VAT liability
  4. There is no import duty payable in Malta on civil aircraft and aircraft are exempt from Maltese stamp duty purposes
  5. Malta has been a part of the European Union (EU) since 2004
  6. Malta has one of the lowest VAT rates within the EU
  7. Recognition of fractional ownership of aircraft. Fractional ownership means co-owners of the title may divide ownership into specified fractions or percentages can be financed by different creditors who can only seek security over that particular fraction.
  8. No restrictions on the nationality of shareholders and directors of Maltese aviation companies
  9. Malta has fantastic local aviation services that are available to meet any of your needs regarding aircraft maintenance, aircraft management, aircraft repair and control
  10. The €17 million Safi Aviation Park offers protected airside facilities for aviation and related activities. Safi Aviation Park complies with aviation standards set out by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA)
  11. The Cape Town Convention provides lessors with a higher degree of protection and more effective support while allowing lower borrowing costs.

The Cape Town Convention

One of the main benefits of the Aircraft Registration Act was the approval of the Cape Town Convention on International Interests in Mobile Equipment and Aircraft Protocols into Malta law.

The primary aim of the Convention and the Protocol is to resolve the problem of obtaining certain and opposable rights to high-value aviation assets that have no fixed location.

Two main benefits arose from the implementation of the law:

  1. Predictability & enforceability – An international electronic interest registration system improves the prediction of questions surrounding the securities and interest held by sellers of aviation assets.
  2. Cost savings – Reducing risks for creditors, therefore the borrowing costs to debtors, through the resulting improved legal certainty. Moreover, promoting credits for the acquisition of more modern and thus more fuel-efficient aircraft.

Who is Eligible to Register an Aircraft in Malta?

For successful aircraft registration in Malta, an applicant must meet one of the following conditions:

  • Be the owner of the aircraft
  • Be the owner of the aircraft that is under construction or temporarily not being operated
  • Be an operator of an aircraft under a temporary title
  • Be a buyer of an aircraft that is under a conditional sale, which satisfies certain conditions and outlines who is authorised to operate the aircraft.

What are the Aircraft Registration Requirements?

The Aircraft Registration Malta Act distinguishes between mandatory entries in the register and others which are not compulsory for aircraft registration but are allowed. The essential requirements for Malta airplane registration are:

  • All physical details of the aircraft and engines (including replacement engines for that aircraft)
  • Name and Address of registrant
  • Details of any mortgages registered over the aircraft
  • Any power of attorneys related to de-registration, the security of the mortgagee, third party rights over the plane.

International & Malta Aircraft Register

There are also further requirements for airplane registration in Malta regarding the international aircraft register. The international aircraft register allows individuals and organisations to register and search for financial interests in aircraft assets. Malta released an Information and Advisory Notice in January 2019 (link) giving more information about aircraft registration in Malta and the international aircraft registration.

For more information on the international aircraft register, visit www.internationalregistry.aero

Malta Aircraft Prefix

Aircraft registration provides a one-or-two-character alphanumeric code indicating the nationality of civil aircraft. Much like an aircraft country code. Malta’s registration number is listed as 9H. Moreover, three other letters follow the aircraft registration number such as AEQ (seen in the below photo).

Aircraft Registration in Malta

 

You can find the Malta Aircraft Register by following this link. The aircraft registration list link shows both current and cancelled aircraft.

Malta Aviation Tax Planning
Aircraft Leasing VAT Programme
Aviation Management Companies

Our Expert Team in Malta Aviation

Drawing on our experience from other aviation clients whom we have managed, our aviation consultants can assist with all your private aircraft registration and aircraft business requirements. We have helped many owners successfully move or set up aviation operations in Malta as well as assisting individuals with the Maltese aircraft registration process.

For assistance with either corporate or private aircraft registration in Malta or setting up aviation operations in Malta, please contact us.

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