New Regs in the Med

31 May 2011 By Claire Griffiths

Are theycircus performers? Best-selling authors? Comedians? No. They’re port authorityofficials, harbormasters and long-armed law enforcers. You’re just a littleconfused from that bump on your head courtesy of the rulebook they just lobbedat you.

As Dockwalk reported in the June edition of Dockwalk magazine, The Hybrid EuropeanTargeting Inspection Regime (THETIS) came into force on January 1, 2011. Thismeans that commercial yachts (including those under 500 tons) can expect aninspection from the Port State Control officials while cruising in the Paris MOU region ifthey have not already had one. As Dohle Yachts reports: “Any vessel that doesnot have an inspection history in the Paris MOU region is automaticallyassigned as Priority 1: (unknown ship) requiring a ‘more detailed inspection’at the earliest opportunity.”

Yachtsthat do not have a Paris Mou inspection history are classified as ‘Priority 1’regardless of the ship type, flag, classification society or management company.Dhole Yachts also reports that commercial yachts have been subject to formaldetention and warn other vessels, “Inspections and re-inspections do nottake account of the yacht’s charters or owner preferred schedule or wishes.This could result in charters being lost or severely disrupted. Multiple detentions will leave to management companies being considered 'high risk' and their managed yachts will attract more inspections."

Meanwhile,a bit of red tape actually unraveled tocelebrate the summer in Croatia. Dorijan Dujmic, country manager of BWACroatia, reports changes in the country’s visa regime between April 1 andOctober 31, 2011. Temporary suspension of visa regulations apply to foreignerswho hold a valid residence permits issued by one of the Schengen Area countriesif they also hold ordinary valid passports. Citizens of the Russian Federation,Ukraine and Kazakh nationals temporarily do not need a visa during this timeand relaxed entry regulations also apply to citizens of India, The People’sRepublic of China, Jordan, Qatar, Kuwait, Sultanate ofOman and United Arab Emirates.

And inItaly, they’ve been busy getting their books in order and adoptedEU Directive 2002/59/CE in February. FrancescoLuise of Luise Associates advises yachts cruising in Italy for more than 24hours to inform the authorities of their yacht identification, ETA and totalnumber of passengers on board at each next port of arrival. The sameprocedure applies if the trip is shorter than 24 hours, in which case portauthorities must be informed as soon as the information is known. Francescoalso advises all yachts to declare cash (over 10,000 euros per passenger) atthe first port of call. No duty is levied on sums over 10,000 euros perpassenger, but failure to declare cash is subject to a 40 percent penalty of thetotal amount found by custom officials. “I recommend that the cash is kept inthe guests’ respective cabins/safes and not in the captain’s safe, because itis difficult to prove how much cash belongs to each person.”