Ever since they were established, most private yachts have always been registered with the MCA. This has been on the insistence of the nation’s navigation authority because it was for their services that yacht owners were required to register their vessels. In that regard, there have been two ways through which yacht owners can register their private yachts in the Maldives.
Period of emergency
Firstly, if a private yacht has been requisitioned for a period of emergency such as a government rescue mission or perhaps a military campaign, there is a procedure that can be followed to have the vessel recorded. A full survey must be conducted of the yacht before its registration in the Maldives. It’s usually quite fairly evaluated on a case-by-case basis in the event of conflicting sovereign laws around things like the legal status of CBD E-liquid in the country of the yacht’s origin. Furthermore, the vessel’s hull and canvas must be checked. In addition, the boat must have proper documentation of the hull and canvas. When the survey has been conducted and the necessary documentation is prepared and presented, the registration certificate is issued.
Use of a satellite
The second method is to use the satellite technology provided by the navigation authority for its services. In that regard, the yacht’s registration must be done in advance in the presence of a representative from the MCA. However, the documentation is not required as the satellite number of the vessel is noted on the certificate. On application, the MCA renews the yacht’s registration when it reaches six years of age. However, when the yacht reaches ten years of age, the MCA renews the registration.
It is interesting to note that this rule only applies to registered vessels in the Maldives. As the largest nation in the region, all yachts not registered in the Maldives are considered foreign-owned. Owners of such boats are required to register their yachts with the MCA or an equivalent government agency. At times, international yacht owners come to the Maldives because they have a domestic issue to resolve before they leave the country. However, some of them choose to register their yachts in the Maldives because of its importance as a tourist hub. It is also thought that some of the wealthy visitors to the Maldives only register their yachts to give the illusion that they are tourists. It is this way that boat owners are also breaking the law of the sea.
In regard to the current confusion about the registration of the private yachts in the Maldives, it is most likely to be a case of miscommunication between the relevant authorities. This has to do with the strictness in the licensing for mariners that applies in the Maldives. Any vessel that has an engine that can go beyond 4,000 watts is considered a merchant vessel. This is because the maritime states in the region have very strict regulations regarding merchant vessels.
It is true that if a person is authorised to sail a vessel, then he is also entitled to register it in the country in which he is sailing. However, this applies only when the particular boat’s engine is below 4,000 watts and it is registered in the country in which the person is carrying out his maritime activities. In this particular case, many of the yachts in the Maldives are not registered in the countries in which they are sailing. The issue is further complicated by the fact that there is no requirement for the registration of foreign-owned yachts when they are used for the purpose of tourism. All they require is to get a certificate of insurance and then apply for a licence to be able to sail the yacht on the open sea.