Transport Malta, the Authority responsible for the Malta Ship Register, through its Merchant Shipping Directorate, reports a strong and positive performance for 2015.
As at end of the year, the Maltese Register of Shipping registered an increase of almost 8.3 million gross tonnage representing a growth rate of 14.3% over the previous year. As at end of December 2015, the registered gross tonnage under the Merchant Shipping Act was 66.2 million gross tons. These statistics represent record figures for the Malta Flag and a significant achievement for the Malta Flag Administration, since over 900 ships for a total gross tonnage of over 12 million tons were registered during the year. These results continued to consolidate Malta's position as the leading Ship Register in Europe and the 6th largest in the world. This success is mainly attributed to the continued effort of Transport Malta and the Maltese shipping community to attract serious companies to the Maltese Register.
Malta has also continued to consolidate its positive results in terms of its technical performance, thus reinforcing the quality of its registered fleet and its firm commitment towards safe, secure and clean shipping. This is also a result of the drive by the Maltese shipping community to attract more young and innovative tonnage to the fleet. The average age of merchant ships registered under the Merchant Shipping Act during 2015, was of 6.7 years, thus decreasing the average age of all the registered merchant fleet to 12 years.
Mr James Piscopo, Chairman and CEO of Transport Malta commented "this status was achieved thanks to the efforts of all stakeholders including shipowners, seafarers and the efforts and commitment of the personnel of the Merchant Shipping Directorate of Transport Malta. Such achievement is testimony that commitment to quality pays and that the Malta Flag Administration has managed to concurrently increase both its growth rate and enhance the technical performance of its registered fleet. I take this opportunity to thank all stakeholders for their contribution and confidence shown in Transport Malta."
Today, the Malta Register has also become a world leader in super yachts registration where Malta has also registered positive results. Despite the current financial situation worldwide, the Malta flag registered an increase of 10.8% over the previous year, in the registration of superyachts of over 24 metres in length. As of the end of December 2015, the superyacht fleet flying the Maltese flag worldwide was 501 yachts.
Mr Piscopo concluded: "these positive results encourage us to work harder to ensure that Maritime Malta continues to benefit from the associated positioning within these international sectors, both from the substantial direct foreign revenue and the indirect added value to its economy. These results also represent yet another milestone towards further consolidating Malta as an international centre of maritime excellence in the Mediterranean and a solid contribution towards the creation of quality jobs in Malta."
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