The publication of the Merchant Shipping Act (Amendment of Various Articles) Regulations, 2016 introduced various amendments to the Merchant Shipping Act (“MSA”) which have come into effect as from the 1st of July 2016.

The amendments include the following:

  1. Ships of 500 gross tonnage and over have the possibility of obtaining a Certificate of Malta Registry and a Renewal Certificate for a maximum validity period of five (5) years;
  2. The Certificate of Malta Registry may be issued in the name of the charterer or lessee. Previously, this was only available to a vessel’s charterer under Section 19A of the MSA;
  3. Transport Malta may declare the Certificate of Malta Registry invalid in case of non-payment of the relevant fees;
  4. The possibility of registering a change in the ownership of a ship following a merger or by operation of law has been introduced; and
  5. The name of a bareboat charter registration of a ship in or out of Malta can now be changed.

Legal Notice 210 of 2016, introducing these amendments, can be accessed here.