Balearics News Update - MYBA Charter Show, Palma and Superyacht Investor Conference

Feedback from the MYBA Charter Show in Barcelona show was very positive, with everyone agreeing that it was refreshed and re-energised after 17 years in Genoa.

As expected, the main topic of conversation was the new Decree 21/2017, with most people agreeing that the small changes would make a big different to the Balearic yacht charter industry.

The new  Decree 21/2017 came into force in mid-May and is a clear signal that the Balearic government is getting more on board with the yacht industry.

The new legislation is more of an update and simplification and doesn’t make any foundational changes; rather, it should make obtaining a charter licence for the Balearics more straightforward.

It’s important to note that a cruising permit from the Spanish Maritime Authority is still needed to sail in Spain, but no changes have been made to that procedure.

The Decree has created a Balearic Register of Charterers and Yachts. This is a public registry in which all owners who have submitted Declarations of Responsibility will be recorded and registered. It is thought this will help to control illegal charter activity.

  • Non-EU or European Economic Area registered vessels are permitted to charter in the Balearics.
  • The compliance certificates – maritime and financial – held on board the yacht are the responsibility of the person who signed the application for the Balearic Government Licence (Declaration of Responsibility) for non-EU flagged and EEA vessels.
  • The Balearic Government Licence is now valid for two years, effective from 1st January 2018. Note that any applications filed up to that date are only valid for one year.
  • Yachts which intend to charter in the Balearics are still required to carry the same documents for the Government Licence, but foreign documents no longer need to be translated. Translations are still required for documents that relate to the Cruising Permit.
  • The other news is that the obligation to have passenger liability insurance has been removed. However, there is, of course, a need for the yacht owner to obtain appropriate cover.

Palma Superyacht Show

The Palma Superyacht Show followed straight on from the MYBA Charter Show with a focus on yacht sales rather than charter.

Now supported by the Mediterranean Yacht Brokers Association (MYBA), the event has grown from a predominantly sub 24-metre vessel show into a superyacht show with yachts of up to 60 metres on display.

With the Balearics seeing the biggest growth percentage in charter yacht numbers, this show is a reflection of the surge of interest in cruising in this area.

All the main brokerage houses were represented and this provided an ideal opportunity to meet existing industry contacts and to build some new relationships.

A new ‘captain’s corner’ featured talks on subjects such as Spanish charter rules and withholding tax on charters was well received.

With 60 superyacht exhibitors, high visitor numbers and also some sunshine the event was buzzing and full of activity.

Bruce Maltwood and Tim Joyce attended the show with a busy schedule of meetings and discussions with a number of brokers, managers and agents and Palma looks to be a permanent addition to the Sarnia calendar.

Superyacht Investor Conference Report

As usual, there was plenty to talk about at this conference and the live electronic polls were a great new addition to the format. These generated lots of very thought- provoking questions.

As expected, there was no ground-breaking news release at the conference but more of a general discussion forum covering a range of topics including finance, the US market, cybercrime, yacht management, IP, MYBA sales contract and yacht charter.

Discussions away from the conference room focused on the current hot topics such as the new French crew social security decree which may come into force in July and also the new charter transport contract which does not look like it is going to be in place for the 2017 season.

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