The Firm assists clients with yacht registrations both under the Maltese flag and other jurisdictions.
Maltese Yacht Registration
A yacht (pleasure or commercial use) may be registered under the Malta flag in the name of a company (of any nationality) or an individual (strictly an EU/EEA/ Swiss/UK nationals). Where the owner is a non-Maltese company or EU/EEA/Swiss/UK national, a resident agent in Malta would need to be appointed to represent the International Owner concerned with the Malta Registry of Shipping.
A yacht to be used for pleasure purposes may be registered under the Malta flag in a relatively quick time with very few requirements.
The 2020 Commercial Yacht Code (CYC) is a comprehensive code which regulates the registration of all commercial yachts starting from a minimum length of 15 metres, carrying not more than 12 passengers and being operated for commercial purposes. All yachts covered by the Code must be surveyed, certified and maintained in accordance with their respective category requirements. An initial commercial yacht survey and radio equipment inspection respectively must be carried out when a commercial yacht is joining the Malta flag for the first time. Upon satisfactory completion of the Initial Survey, the Registry of Shipping will issue the yacht with a Certificate of Compliance to trade as a “commercial yacht” is issued, valid for 5 years.
The Firm also assists yacht owners with both pleasure and commercial registrations under non-Maltese flags.
The Firm acts as the Designated Office in Malta of the International Merchant Marine Registry of Belize and the Jamaican Ship Registry respectively, and also has a close working relationship with other international flag administrations.
GUIDELINES REGARDING ITEM 12 OF PART TWO OF THE THIRD SCHEDULE TO THE VALUE ADDED TAX ACT
The Maltese Commissioner for Revenue published Guidelines in March 2020 on this matter. The general principle is that full taxation in Malta is applicable where the place of supply of the service consisting in the leasing of a pleasure boat is determined to be Malta in accordance with the provisions of Item 8 of Part Two of the Third Schedule to the VAT Act. However, where all the conditions referred to in Item 12 of Part Tw o of the Third Schedule to the VAT Act are satisfied and in order to prevent double taxation, non-taxation or distortion of competition, a lessor of a pleasure boat shall calculate the actual effective use and enjoyment by the lessee of such pleasure boat outside EU territorial waters during the relevant tax period (i) by reference only to the period of time when the pleasure boat is used and enjoyed outside EU territorial waters and (ii) when it is possible to identify such place of effective use and enjoyment outside EU territorial waters. For the purpose of such calculation, the lessor shall utilise such documentary and / or technological data (including logs retained by the master of the pleasure boat as well as any GPS/AIS data) as the lessor can reasonably obtain from the lessee. Please note the Guidelines on the following link:-
Please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org with your yacht registration enquiry for us to guide you with procedures, fees and costs in respect of pleasure or commercial yacht registration, as applicable.