The Isle of Man’s highly successful Ship Registry is evolving to meet the needs of the modern shipping world by streamlining its existing processes, introducing a new fee structure and adding extra value to the world class service provided.
From 1st April 2017 the Ship Registry will no longer carry out the safety management, security and labour convention inspections audits. With over 400 internationally trading ships, it is essential that the Registry provides global coverage for the regular surveys and inspections required by the international conventions. Therefore these services will be fully delegated to the ship’s Classification Societies (Class). Class have a network of global offices and will be better placed to deliver these services within the allocated time windows.
While these services are moving outside the Ship Registry’s delegation, the Register will be introducing a new regime of General Inspections, carried out by the Ship Registry’s own team of surveyors from 1st April 2017. The new regime will satisfy the Register’s Flag State obligations and ensure the quality of ships on the register are operating to the very highest standards expected by the Isle of Man.
Martyn Perkins MHK, Member of the Department of Economic Development with responsibility for the Ship Registry, commented:
‘The expertise that exists on the Isle of Man, both in the Registry team and the private sector, means that pragmatic and bespoke solutions can be provided for all requirements prior to registry and this strong customer service continues while the vessel is in service to ensure the needs of the client can be fully met at all times. The changes to existing services will make the register even more attractive, as it aligns its offering to some of the world’s larger flags, with the extra benefit of retaining its own inspection regime using its own surveyors to add real value as a Flag State.’
Dick Welsh, Director of the Isle of Man Ship Registry, commented:
‘The Isle of Man Ship Registry is already a very successful Flag, posting tonnage growth of over 9% in 2016 and reaching Number 12 in the World Table of Flag States by tonnage, the highest position achieved to date. The move to full delegation of Class services, a system already favoured by many of our clients, will grow our appeal even further.
‘We have consulted widely on the changes and received positive feedback from both clients and Class. We can now utilise our own surveyors to better effect to inspect the vessels and monitor the work Class are carrying out on our behalf. We will be able to arrange these inspection visits at a time to suit the client and provide comprehensive reports which will add real value.’
Mark Robertshaw, Chair of the Isle of Man Shipping Association, commented:
‘The Ship Registry has consulted extensively with the Island’s shipping industry and we believe the new regime will streamline the process for managing new ships and add further appeal to the Island’s world-class Ship Register.’
A new, simplified fee scheme will also be introduced to support the changes and provide a single annual fee to cover annual registry and inspection fees. This means the Flag will continue to provide excellent value for money, particularly in comparison with the larger open registers. It will also allow greater certainty and consistency in financial planning for owners and operators.