MCI Newsletter, March 2016
Steady growth recorded by MCI for 2015
MCI registered an 11% growth in the fleet last year with 201 new vessels, up from 184 in 2014. The fleet grew from 473 vessels in 2014 to 525 vessels at the end of December.
In tonnage added terms in 2015, this is equal to 318,245 gross tons or a 21% increase.
Our latest figures show that 149 Vessels were de-registered in 2015 and these were mainly yachts coming to the end of a three or five year registration .It also included 20 SOLAS cargo vessels some of which were sold and changed flag but most of which went to scrap.
Just a handful of vessels changed flag under the same management and ownership as registered in the Cook Islands and this demonstrates that the vast majority of owners registering their vessels with MCI are happy with the service we provide.
Glenn Armstrong commented: “I would like to congratulate everyone connected to the flag for a year which has seen promising growth and expansion. We intend to continue to invest in the quality of our service and this kind of growth is encouraging for us.
“It shows there is a place in world shipping for a niche, personal service flag like ours which aspires to the highest standards while keeping a personal touch.”
He pointed out that growth came from across the board and from a broad selection of deputy registrars but that special mention should be made of the Deputy Registrar in Turkey Cem Ertem and his team as well as TY Cheng and Hilda Loe in Singapore.
Glenn added there had been no major collapse in tonnage despite the difficult trading conditions MCI faced back in 2014, the war in Ukraine and general instability in the Middle East and Black Sea regions.
Maritime Cook Islands concludes IMO Audit
The Cook Islands Maritime Administration took part in a major IMO audit last year which involved officials from various state offices such as the Prime Minister Office, the Crown Law Office and the Ministry of Transportation as well as the senior management of Maritime Cook Islands (“MCI”).
The purpose of the voluntary audit was to determine MCI’s ability to meet its flag, coastal and port state obligations and responsibilities in relation to the applicable IMO instruments. Two auditors, Mr Kit Jam Chen and Mr. Zhengrong Sha started the audit on 16 March and completed the audit in seven days on 22 March.
It has taken a little time to digest the findings but the results of the audit has been largely positive with two areas highlighted for its positive developments.
The first recognises MCI’s best practices which saw the introduction of a quality management system certified by a third party. This provides the maritime administration with the scope of improving its processes related to maritime safety and the prevention of pollution from ships.
The second is the establishment of the Cook Islands’ National Maritime Transport Policy and the Ministry of Transport’s Maritime Strategic Plan 2015-2020. This will collaboratively serve to provide a framework for an overall strategy which effectively coordinates the state’s maritime-related work and provides a mechanism for assessing the overall effectiveness of the state in meeting its international obligations under the mandatory IMO instruments.
Other than the positive areas of developments, there are also several areas which have been marked for improvement; corrective actions have since been taken during the course of 2015.
Glenn Armstrong, CEO of MCI said: “We are glad to have concluded the year long process to have the maritime administration of Cook Islands audited by the IMO. Though it has taken a lot of time and effort, it is important for MCI to be vetted by the IMO for transparency and benchmarking purposes. We have identified several areas that needs improvements and the team has been working hard to address them. We believe MCI will come out stronger from this process and our clients can expect a better and improved version of MCI soon.”
Second Singapore-based VLCC to be registered with Cook Islands
Singapore Deputy Registrar, TY Cheng, has just entered Singapore based VLCC, Sea Coral, into the Maritime Cook Islands registry making it the second VLCC to be registered with Cook Islands out of Singapore.
The vessel is operated by An Zhong Shipping Pte Ltd from Singapore.
The Sea Coral IMO No. 9077886 is a Lloyd’s Register single screw diesel engine driven VLCC registered with the Cook Islands flag with the following particulars:
Length: 332 m
Breadth: 58 m
Depth: 9.78 m
Gross Tonnage: 156802 tonnes
Deadweight: 298306 tonnes
Sea Coral is double hulled and is built with 15 cargo tanks, two slop tanks, five tiers of deck house, bulbous bow and transom stern.
Accommodation superstructure incorporating wheelhouse and machinery space is situated aft of the cargo tanks. The vessel is powered by one unit of turbo-charged marine diesel engine, driving a fixed pitch propeller.
Deputy Registrar Focus – Jonathan Leach
This edition, we spoke with Jonathan Leach, the appointed deputy registrar of United Kingdom, who gave us the background story how his family business came to become a part of the Maritime Cook Islands. Fun fact about Jon – He is an avid collector of centuries’ old muskets of which, part of his collection can be seen in the photo below. Read on to see what he has to say.
- Who do you work for?
Blue Ensign Ltd is a family business, set up 25 years ago carrying out general condition surveys of mainly yachts, with other commercial vessels as well, but not “ships”, which is a different market.
- What is your job for that company?
I conduct all of the surveys, as I originally trained as a shipwright building yachts of both traditional and modern materials. I have worked for the best yacht building companies in the U.K. and also as staff Surveyor for one of the most well-known firm of Naval Architects.
- How did you get involved with MCI?
For 25 years we have been authorised by the U.K. MCA to survey vessels for commercial use. About ten years ago we found we were losing clients as they moved up to larger vessels, beyond our authority.
It was then that we explored the possibility of retaining existing clients and gaining new ones by offering a different flag that allowed us to survey the larger vessels. After much research, we concluded that the Cook Islands and MCI were perfect for the task, and is a move we have never regretted.
- What progress has been made since you linked up with MCI?
Ten years ago the registry was very much aligned with “ships”, making the document trail for yachts not as simple as it could be. The introduction of the yacht club scheme (CIYS), has made a huge difference, in making the whole registration process faster and easier.
The scheme was so successful, that the ship owners saw the benefits, and a similar club scheme has now been established for them. Then, membership of IMO brought credibility to the flag, so the lawyers and managers suddenly started to look at the flag as a viable option.
- What do you normally tell Owners and Operators about MCI when you are spreading the word about them?
The main selling points that we use are flexibility, a fast service, and a very personal service. We know our owners, managers and Captains, so it is also very secure.
- Do you think MCI has a natural target audience in where you are generally?
Our clients are located globally. The vessels move around, so we must go to them at a time that suits their schedules. This is part of the personal service.
- What does MCI need to do to make itself even more attractive to Owners?
Raising awareness of the benefits of MCI, as it takes a long time for the message to filter through and for decision makers to change from the “old” flags they have used for years.
- Where do you see your relationship with MCI in five years’ time?
We see ourselves as part of the team, being a cornerstone of the registry, giving assistance wherever we can.
Maritime Cook Islands expands network; Appointment of Deputy Registrars in India
Maritime Cook Islands (“MCI”), has established its presence in India with the appointment of two deputy registrars (“DR”), Mr Faust Pinto Jr and Ms Fereshte D Sethna, to serve the growing yacht owning community in the Indian markets.
Mr Faust Pinto Jr and Ms Fereshte D Sethna are both based in Mumbai and are well-known by their industry peers in the shipping industry. Based on their combined experience of more than 55 years, owners in the region can register their yachts with absolute confidence; handled by senior executives familiar in their language and with no time difference.
Glenn Armstrong said: “We welcome Faust and Fereshte to the MCI family – their appointments will serve a growing market in the world’s fastest growing economy. They are well-connected to the shipping market in India and we trust them to grow our yacht book significantly in the coming years. We believe MCI will be the flag of choice for these new owners.”
Mr Faust Pinto Jr is a seasoned industry player, having started his career in shipping almost three decades ago managing a fleet of Cargo Vessels operating in India, the Gulf and South East Asia.
Mr Pinto applies his vast knowledge and experience to surveying and has been appointed as surveyor on behalf of clients for commercial vessels and private yachts.
Ms Fereshte D Sethna is a Senior Partner, founding member of the law firm DMD and managing partner of its Mumbai office. She heads the firm’s International Litigation & ADR Group, and is also the proprietor-founder of Dunmorr Sett, a maritime law practise.
Her career spans over 25 years across several industries all over the world. She originally practiced maritime law, and presently supervises DMD’s admiralty and shipping law work. As a reputed maritime lawyer, she has extensively handled P&I and H&M work, ship sale & purchase, shipwrecks and mortgages amongst others.
The addition of the two DR significantly boosts the global network of MCI to 26 offices and this is in line with MCI’s vision of being a world class ship registry.
To contact Faust and Fereshte, drop them an email at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org respectively.
MCI – the preferred wreck removal certificate issuer
Maritime Cook Islands (“MCI”) was one of the early adopters of the Nairobi Wreck Removal Convention before it came into force in 2015. Since then, MCI has assisted thousands of vessels successfully obtain the Wreck Removal Certificates (WRC) required for entry into State Party Ports.
As at 17 December 2015, 25 contracting states have signed the Convention and MCI remains to be owners’ preferred choice for the straight-forward online application which allows certificates to be issued within 24 hrs. With over 20 offices around the world from which certificates can be issued directly, ship owners can rest assure on the certificates’ delivery.
We are particularly pleased with our progress to-date and this is affirmed with our new tie up with the Singapore maritime port authority (“MPA”) to issue WRC to Singapore registered ships. We are delighted with this arrangement and will be working closely with the maritime port authority to issue the WRC promptly.
As we head into the February renewals, we expect to see a surge of application in order to comply with the regulations. We urge all owners / managers currently without a certificate to apply now or risk having their business being substantially compromised as their ships are refused entry to State Party ports.
To obtain the certificate from MCI in a speedy and cost effective way, please click here: https://secure.maritimecookislands.com/wreck/application.php . We are also pleased to add that you can apply for Certificates for up to 20 vessels per application.
H.E. Captain Ian Finley meets IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim
H.E. Captain Ian Finley, Permanent Representative of the Cook Islands to the International Maritime Organization, meets IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim to deliver the Cook Islands’ assessed annual budget contribution to IMO.
Cook Island delegation visits Singapore – 22 March 2016
This March, Maritime Cook Islands (MCI) will be hosting a by-invitation seminar and networking reception in Singapore for senior lawyers and financing executives.
The event will be led by Anthony Manarangi, former solicitor-general of The Cook Islands, where he was responsible for drafting legislation in all areas, criminal and civil litigation, advising the Government of the Cook Islands on financial centre activity and transactions, and negotiated on civil aviation bilateral agreements and maritime transport. Now in private practice, Mr Manarangi’s clients include the World Bank, AusAID and the governments of Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu, Niue and The Cook Islands.
The conference will focus on Cook Islands law on the validity and enforceability of bank securities.
MCI’s number of registered vessels in Singapore has seen a steady rise over the last few years, with 80 new vessels coming into the registry since 2012. The majority of new vessels have been commercial and private yachts, as conditions and opportunity for local and overseas owners finds traction in Singapore’s robust economic state and amid its transparent legal framework.
Deputy Registrars 2016 Biennial Meet; 27 June 2016 at Rarotonga, Cook Islands
That’s what all Maritime Cook Islands deputy registrars will hear the first thing they gather for their biennial meet on 27 June 2016.
Organised at Cook Islands this year, alongside MCI executive staff members and advisors, deputy registrars from all over the world will descend upon the white sandy beaches of Rarotonga to discuss the performance of the activities and achievements of the previous year and to anticipate a further year of the registry’s global growth.
Topics in hand will be:
- MCI’s brand new online and I.T. platform, to further streamline processes and operations and make it even easier for owners and operators to utilise MCI’s full suite of services.
- Quality management systems and scope for any further enrichment.
- Compliance issues – how is the registry’s track record? Is there room for procedural improvement?
- Marketing and growth – sectors, class of vessel, regional and national hubs. This year the registry saw impressive growth in most sectors, with tankers and yachts strongest.
- MCI’s network of deputy registrars covers the maritime world, with three new registrars added in Italy, Croatia/Montenegro and Hong Kong in the last 18 months.
Youth With A Mission (YWAM) Medical Ship Returns to PNG with new clinics!
The YWAM PNG ship is a Cook Islands flagged vessel and we are proud to share its latest progress since it was acquired to replace its existing floating clinic.
YWAM has operated around the globe now for over 30 years in shipping with some of the largest ships of mercy in the world, operating in the Pacific since 1991.
It was in 2014 where the replacement vessel MV YWAM PNG was purchased and will commence its operations in PNG in 2015.
The clinic renovations onboard the MV YWAM PNG are well underway and what once was a cruise ship restaurant, is now transforming into a dental clinic and day surgery unit that will serve thousands of people in remote areas of Papua New Guinea.
The YWAM is glad to announce the return date to Papua New Guinea where their brand new onboard clinic will make its debut!
The MV YWAM PNG will be in the Southern Region from February to June 2016. During that time they will be running primary health care, dentistry, optometry, and ophthalmology clinics, as well as professional development for rural health workers and health promotion/character development sessions for the general community.
A beautiful video has been created to capture their love and hope for PNG, click here to watch more! And if you wish to find out more, follow them here on Facebook.
Maritime Cook Islands at Posidonia 2016
Posidonia is one of the world’s biggest and well-attended international shipping event held in Greece every two years. This year from 6-10 June, the exhibition and conference will take place at the Metropolitan Expo in Athens and it is the biggest gathering of shipping professionals from around the world.
Maritime Cook Islands (MCI) is proud to be a part of the global meet and will have a stand at the exhibition. Deputy registrars, XX and XX will be present on the stand and will be available for meetings and answering any queries you may have. Should you like to make an appointment with them, drop them a mail at XX.