Why you should Choose Malta to Register your Yacht
In this Article
In this article Jonathan Said, COO at Michael Kyprianou Malta, gives factual reasons why you should seriously consider registering your yacht or superyacht (or any vessel for that matter) in Malta. Mr Said is not only COO at Michael Kyprianou Advocates and Legal Consultants but also has extensive experience in vessel registration. Consequently, Mr Said also lists a number of services one can contact MK Malta for.
Why Register your Yacht in Malta?
There are plenty of reasons that should make you instantly fall in love with the idea of registering your yacht in Malta. However, in practical terms, prior to making your choice there are four essential boxes that need to be ticked. These are, of course: accessibility of location, competitive price, ease of transactions, and reputability.
Luckily for you, Malta ticks all those boxes, and much – much more! Whilst having been widely reputable in the maritime industry, Maltese flags have long been masted on a variety of vessels; becoming a regular and common occurrence on the seas. In terms of ease of transactions and pricing, Malta has some of the most competitive prices in the world, hence its popularity, whilst applying for the flag does not come with needless bureaucracy and loss of time. Last but not least, we’re in the middle of the Mediterranean; right in the middle of three continents (Europe, Africa, Asia), as well as joining two oceans together (Atlantic & Indian) via the Strait of Gibraltar and the Suez Canal. In terms of accessibility, it does not get more central than that.
Yachts and Superyachts in Malta – the Legal Side
The legal and regulatory platform in Malta for pleasurecraft and yachts has been extensively developed and refined. The Maltese flag has consequently become an extremely reputable international ship register over the years. This is part of the reason Malta is home to one of the largest ship registers in the world.
Yachts and Superyachts in Malta – the Registration
There are two categories in which your yacht can fall when registered under the Maltese flag: Private and Commercial. Either or, registration in Malta is extremely apprehensible and is usually conducted with much ease. Of course, all documentation must be in order (this is where our dedicated team at MK Advocates steps in!). Subsequently, yachts are then registered provisionally under the Malta Flag for six months (which is extendible) until all is finalised.
Transport Malta, the authority overseeing registration in Malta, categorises yachts under these two principal classes. Private registration is implied when the craft is used for pleasure and for “the sole purpose of the owner”, whilst Commercial registration implies that a firm is operating the yacht and chartering it for profits.
According to Transport Malta, the following classes of yachts are considered for commercial registration:
- Yachts in commercial use of not less than 15 metres in length and not more than 24 metres.
- Superyachts in commercial use of more than 24 metres in length and less than 500 gross tonnes.
- Superyachts in commercial use of more than 24 metres in length and 500 gross tonnes and over.
Other Perks of Registering a Yacht in Malta
A simple added benefit is the charm of all of the Mediterranean being at reach. Malta is in the middle of all the sought-after coasts and fishing villages of the Med, whether it be Taormina, the Greek islands or the Amalfi coast, all of these are within close reach of Malta. Additionally, there is the charm of Malta itself to add to that list.
Furthermore, the registry has maintained its positive reputation for its straightforward procedures for yacht registration, and provisional registration of a pleasure yacht obtainable within one to three days. Whilst enjoying competitive registration and renewal fees, twenty-four hours, seven days a week service is guaranteed, which is utterly useful in emergency situations. Having English as an official language, and being part of the European Union, renders the Maltese registration both efficient and effective.
Another perk is the ‘use of enjoyment’ guidelines Malta has implemented since 2020, which defines the applied Maltese VAT of 18% strictly applicable when the yacht is being used solely within EU waters, whereas no VAT is applicable when the yacht is effectively used and enjoyed within non-EU or international waters, which effectively allows for VAT optimisation.
What are the Recent Trends?
We all know that for yachting enthusiasts, the market is always changing and evolving. However, Malta is set to take some big steps with a first national yachting policy, said to be launched in the coming months.
The current minister for transport has promised this amid a growing number of registrations. In fact there are currently 1,030 superyachts globally which are registered under the Maltese flag, whilst Malta also experienced a 51% increase in registrations. This was done during a superyacht symposium organised by the Malta Chamber of Commerce and the Malta Maritime Law Association in Malta on the 5th of July.
OK, So What Can Michael Kyprianou Advocates Do for Me?
The Yachts team at Michael Kyprianou Advocates and Legal consultants has a genuine passion for the yachting industry. We are specialised in ownership solutions for superyachts, yacht registrations and tax optimisation of yacht ownership and enjoyment.
The MK Malta acts for major international pleasure yacht brands, superyacht brokers and yacht owners, assisting with all legalities of yacht ownership, freeing up time for our clients’ better enjoyment of their vessel. At MK Malta we provide solutions for yachts and superyachts, yacht registrations and tax optimisation of yacht ownership tailored for our clients’ needs.
The following is a non-exhaustive list of our services:
- Commercial Yacht Registration
- Pleasure Yacht Registration
- Yacht Structures (holding or trading)
- Maritime Commercial and Trading Structures
- VAT Yacht Solutions
The content of this article is valid as at the date of its first publication. It is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter and does not constitute legal advice. We recommend that you seek professional advice on your specific matter before acting on any information provided. For further information or advice, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone +356 2016 1010.