Ship registration


Ship registration and mortgaging are regulated by the Mauritius Merchant Shipping Act, 1986 and the Mauritius Shipping (Amendment) Act 1992 which have been largely fulfill on the British Merchant Shipping Act.

Administration of the ship Registry

The administration of the Mauritius Open Ship Registry is under the responsibility of the Director of Shipping, Ministry of Trade and Shipping.


The following categories of persons or companies are entitled to own and register ships under the Mauritian Flag:

(i) Citizens of Mauritius

(ii) Companies incorporated in Mauritius which are effectively controlled by Mauritian citizens

(iii) Companies incorporated outside Mauritius provided they receive the approval of the relevant authorities.

(iv) Registered Global Companies (Category 1 and 2)

Registration Requirements

Type: Every type of sea worthy vessel, lighter, barge structure or launch, however propelled, intended for use in navigation is eligible

Age: It shall not exceed 15 years of age since the date of first construction

Class: It must be classified with a classification society approved by the Director of Shipping


The Mauritian shipping laws provide for, permanent, provisional and parallel registration of vessels.

Permanent Registration

Permanent registration is where the ship is permanently registered after fulfillment of all of the registration procedures.

Provisional Registration

Provisional registration under the Mauritian Flag for a period not exceeding 6 months prior to permanent registration is allowed. Provisional registration of a vessel may be effected at any place abroad, where Mauritius has an embassy, a consulate or a honorary consul.

Paralell (Bareboat) Registration

Ships bareboat registered in a foreign registry chartered by Mauritian companies may be registered in the Mauritius Open Ship Registry for the period of the charter not exceeding three years. Registration of the ship in the foreign register shall during that time be suspended.

Application must be supported by a certified copy of the bareboat charter, a certificate of ownership and mortgages of that foreign register, consent in writing of the registered owner of the foreign ship and the mortgages, together with all the documents required for permanent registration.

A Mauritian ship may be mortgaged for the purpose of obtaining a loan.

Any discharge or transfer of mortgage must be registered with the Director of Shipping.

• Mauritian registered vessels are exempt from tax on height earnings, resultant net revenue or dividends received from the Mauritian Shipping Company.

• Ship’s stores, consumables, spare parts and bunkers are exempted from customs and excise duties.

• All personnel working on board a Mauritian Flag Ship are exempted from payment of income tax.

• No capital gains tax is payable upon the sale or transfer of a ship or of the shares in a shipping company.

• No estate duty is payable on the inheritance of shares in a shipping company.

• Work permit is not required for non-citizens working on a vessel sailing Mauritius Flag.

• There is no restriction on the nationality of the crew.

• Mauritius has ratified most of the international conventions on maritime safety, prevention of pollution and training and certification of seafarers.