Shipping Owning Companies
The Shipping companies are regulated by the Merchant Shipping Act (Registration of Ships, Sales and Mortgages Laws) 1963-1996.The other principal merchant shipping laws are the Merchant Shipping (Masters and Seamen) Laws 1963-2002 and the Merchant Shipping (Fees and Taxing Provisions) laws 1992-2003.
As from 24th March 2010, the Tonnage Tax System (TTS) was introduced with the Merchant Shipping (Fees & Taxing Provisions) Law 44(I) of 2010 with effect as from 1 January 2010 and covers the three main “maritime transport” activities, namely: ship owning, ship management (crew and technical management) and chartering.
Owners of Cyprus flag ships fall automatically under the new tonnage tax regime, whereas ship owners of foreign flag ships, charterers and ship managers may opt to be taxed under the tonnage tax system (TTS) under certain conditions.
Management & Legal Framework
All shipping issues are under the responsibility of the Ministry of Communications and Works. The Ministry exercises its authority through the Department of Merchant Shipping. The Department is engaged in ship registration, management and enforcement of the legislation on merchant shipping, ship inspection and application of international conventions, investigation of maritime accidents, resolving any labour disputes on Cypriot vessels and training and certification of sea safety.
Establishment of a Cyprus Shipping Company
Non-residents wishing to sign a Cypriot flag should initially establish a Cyprus Shipping Company. The Company will acquire the vessel in its name and be registered as a private limited liability company.
For the registration of the company, a Foundation and Articles of Association will be deposited in Greek language (and English if necessary) with the Registrar of Companies. Upon the establishment of the Company, the Commissioner will issue a certificate after the issue of which the company may commence trading and registering ship(s) in its name.
- Registration of Ships in the Cyprus Register
- Establishment of a shipping, -ship owing, chartering company
- Establishment of a personnel ship management company
- Complete annual compliance requirement services (accounting, VAT, payroll, corporate administration)