Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects Ian Borg visited Transport Malta offices where he gave an update about the Merchant Ship Register within the same Authority.
He said that this register forms a great part of this Authority, and that the success recently achieved by our country in the maritime industry is the result of several measures adopted in recent years by the Government and Transport Malta, as well as thanks to the quality service given by the flag, the positive reputation it has built and the confidence several investors and operators within the sector have in it.
During this update, Minister Borg announced a substantial increase for the same register. He said that up until recently, company CMA CGM was the owner and operator of a fleet of 38 ships registered under the Malta Flag, with a total gross tonnage of over 3.7 million, but after it recently registered 49 additional ships with a total gross tonnage of over 4.8 million, with ships having an average age of 7 years, today CMA CGM has more than 8.5 million gross tonnes registered under the Malta flag, 11% of the entire fleet registered in Malta.
He also announced that 25% of contracts for cruise liner ships being build are intentioned for registration under the Malta flag.
Minister Borg said that it is good to speak about the great quantity of vessels registered in our country. With more than 82 million gross tonnes in vessels, this means that more than 6% of the global fleet is registered under the Malta flag, while the same flag has more than 780 registered superyachts.
At the same time, said the Minister, it is equally important to speak about the Government’s commitment towards quality in the sector. He explained that the average age of ships registered in Malta from January to June of this year was 9 years – one of the lowest we have ever had.
Minister Borg added that the high-quality service offered in our country’s maritime sector has led to several different successes and said that the remainder of the year looks as though it will continue reflecting this success.
“Today we have achieved an international reputation as a quality register, as a jurisdiction that is always at the forefront when it comes to the development of international standards in maritime security and the protection of the maritime environment. Malta is always a leader when it comes to discussions addressing the problem of ship emissions on every level, as well as towards the ratification of International Conventions protecting the maritime environment, the most recent one being the Ballast Water Management Convention,” said Minister Borg.
He explained that thanks to these commitments, today the Maltese Register is not only the largest one in Europe and sixth in the world but was the only one to make large gains in tonnage, with an increase of almost 7% in the first six months of the year. The Minister said that this positive reputation is leading more and more great operators to express their faith in us and to continue investing and registering with us. He added that today Malta is classified on the official low risk ships list published by the Paris MoU, while also being confirmed on the Paris MoU’s White List.
“It is such results that daily continue to confirm the positive reputation we have achieved, a reputation that has led to confidence by the sector, by the industry, thanks to the quality we are committed to continuing working towards,” concluded Minister Ian Borg.