Maritime by Acumum


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Flexible registration and a low tax regime – reasons why Malta has surpassed Greece as the No. 1 shipping registry in the EU

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Maritime by Acumum

  1. 1. Malta’s International Law Firm & Advisory Boutique Maritime & Yacht Registration & Services Flexible Registration Requirements Low Tax EU Jurisdiction Low VAT Scheme Largest Shipping Registry in EU - Surpassing Greece 7th Largest Shipping Registry in the WorldWhy Malta? Malta has encouraged the registration cation and renewal fees are reasonable inand use of the Malta Flag by both commercial ship and yacht amount.owners; through the investment and improvement of bothadministrative services and the maritime infrastructure on Fiscal Benefits of Malta Flagged vesselsMalta. In addition to Malta’s generous ordinary corporate tax re-In fact, Malta has recently surpassed Greece in the number fund system, in respect of shipping companies and shipof vessels being registered under its Flag. managers - licensed as shipping companies, which are re- sponsible for technical or crew management of tonnage taxRegistration Rules ships:Provisional Registration  Exemption from tax - any income arising from shippingUnder the Malta flag, a vessel may be provisionally regis- activities and any income or gains arising from the saletered for 6 months – extendable for up to 1 year – during or transfer of a tonnage tax ship or in respect of any dis-which time the owner would be required to submit certain posal of rights to acquire a ship that would qualify as adocumentation including a copy of the vessel’s international tonnage tax ship.tonnage certificate, evidence of seaworthiness together with  Exemption from tax - gains arising from the liquidation,payment of the relevant fees and tonnage tax. During the redemption, cancellation or any other disposal of shares,provisional registration period, the owner is required to sub- securities, or other interest (including goodwill) held inmit additional documentation regarding the vessel, cancella- any licensed shipping company owning, operating, ad-tion of previous registration (if any) and evidence of owner- ministering or managing a tonnage tax ship, whilst a ton-ship thereof. Once the necessary documentation is supplied nage tax ship.the vessel will be permanently registered under the Malteseflag.  Exemption from tax - on payments of interest or other income relating to the financing of the operations ofPermanent Registration shipping companies or financing of tonnage tax shipsPermanent registration is renewable annually along with an (Continued on page 2)annual fee to the Malta Marine Association (MMA). All appli- Acumum Legal Group: Maltese, UK & International Lawyers Knowledgeable | Superb Client Service | Cost Efficient | | Skype ID: acumum Malta 356 2778 1700 | UK 44 (0)20 7060 4277 |USA 1646 569 9003
  2. 2. Malta’s International Law Firm & Advisory Group Maritime & Yacht Registration & Services No tax on dividends distributed by the shipping com- Additional advantages of registering a Malta ship or pany arising from profits of shipping activities. No duty payable on any instrument connected with or yacht: involving  No nationality restrictions for master, officers and crew - the registration of a tonnage tax ship, the sale or  No trading restrictions on Malta vessels transfer (including shares), assignment of any rights or interest, or assumption of obligations  Vessels under construction may be registered - the issue of allotment of any security or interest of a  Reputable and internationally recognised register shipping company or the purchase, transfer, assignment or negotiation of any security or interest  Excellent international relations - registration of any mortgage or other charge over, or  European Flag with a long maritime tradition any transfer or discharge, or any receipt or assignment  Yachts may be registered under the Malta Flag by cor- in respect of any ship or licensed shipping company porations irrespective of nationality, or by EU citizensVAT Scheme for Yacht Finance Leasing  Malta is on the White List of the Paris MoUIt is possible to reduce the VAT levied when vessels areunder finance lease arrangements; provided that the vessel  Attractive incentives to owners, registered charterersis owned by a Malta registered company and the leaseagreement is less than 3 years. Added to which, the lease and financiers of Maltese shipsagreement must contain an option to purchase the yachtat the end of the lease and such agreement is approved by  No restrictions on the sale or mortgaging of Maltesethe Malta VAT authorities beforehand. registered yachts and super yachtsThe applicable Malta VAT rate levied is dependent upon  Availability of technical assistance from a team ofthe type of vessel and its deemed use within the EU. qualified and experienced mariners. Table - Malta effective VAT rates due: % of Lease Subject Yacht Type Effective VAT Due to VAT Yachts over 24 metres 30% 5.4% Sailing yachts from 20.01 - 24 metres 40% 7.2% Motor yachts from 16.01 - 24 metres 40% 7.2% Sailing yachts from 10.01 - 20 metres 50% 9% Motor yachts from 12.01 - 16 metres 50% 9% Sailing yachts up to 10 metres 60% 10.8% Motor yachts from 7.5 - 12 metres 60% 10.8%Acumum Legal Group: Maltese, UK & International Lawyers Knowledgeable | Superb Client Service | Cost Efficient | | Skype ID: acumum Malta Office + 356 2778 1700 | Local Rate: UK 44 (0)20 7060 4277 |USA 1646 569 9003Information for guidance purposes only © Acumum. All Rights Reserved
  3. 3. Maritime & Yacht Malta’s International Law Firm & Advisory Group Registration & Services Malta’s Ordinary Low Tax Laws Malta is one of few countries left in the world that still has a full imputation system. Meaning, with an effective corporate  Use of IFRS functional convertible currency – for statutory tax rate of 5%, following application of tax refunds, capital, financials, tax and tax refund purposesshareholders are 0% taxed on any dividends that they receive.  Revenue rulings are binding for 5 years or 2 years following a change in legislation.A 100% EU & OECD authorized and legitimate tax system, Malta offers: What ever your fancy - whether for business or pleasure, Acumum can assist you in tax efficient and cost effective regis- No capital gains in Malta on disposal of assets trations and structuring No withholding on outbound payments— includes interest, royalties, dividends, lease payments, or liquidation pro- ceeds, No wealth or inheritance taxes Re-domiciliation of companies allowed— No exit or entry taxes, No transfer pricing, controlled foreign company (CFC) or thin capitalisation rules, 18% VAT- input recoverable & not chargeable for output by international leasing companies. Over 62 double taxation treaties worldwide Tax refunds are legally guaranteed and paid within 2-3 weeks of application Acumum can assist you via our dedicated Malta Maritime specialists in providing you with a range of services: Formation of shipping companies - both ship owning and ship management Malta yacht & ship registration Malta bareboat charter registrations Mortgage registration & discharge Security documentation Handling of all flag administration matters Tax planning for merchant vessels and yacht owners Accounting and secretarial support If you would like further information or would like Acumum to start the process of registering your ship or yacht under the Malta flag, please contact us.Acumum Legal Group: Maltese, UK & International Lawyers Knowledgeable | Superb Client Service | Cost Efficient | | Skype ID: acumum Malta Office + 356 2778 1700 Local Rate: UK 44 (0)20 7060 4277 |USA 1646 569 9003