The Merchant Shipping Act 1992 governs the shipping industry in the Seychelles. Ships and yachts may be registered in the Seychelles under the terms of the Act.. The shipping law provides for parallel registration of bareboat charters in the Seychelles registry; likewise, a Seychelles vessel may be parallel-registered abroad during chartering.
The International Business Company [IBC] is the most effective vehicle for offshore ownership of a Seychelles-registered vessel or ship management operation. Such a company will be exempt from Seychelles taxation on profits and dividends. Sale and transfer of Seychelles-registered vessels or the companies owning them are also free of tax, as are the salaries of officers and crew of Seychelles-registered vessels operating internationally.
It is possible by bareboat chartering a vessel to a company incorporated in Seychelles to have a parallel registration of a vessel under Seychelles flag, provided certain conditions are satisfied. Furthermore it is possible for a vessel registered under Seychelles flag to be bareboat chartered out to a foreign corporation for parallel registration under the flag of another jurisdiction provided the law of the latter recognizes bareboat chartering.
- Exempt from all taxes for earnings or profits from the operation of the vessel
- No tax on the sale or transfer
- No tax payable on the salaries of crew while operating international waters
- Application form
- Declaration of ownership
- Bill of Sale, bareboat charter or builders certificates
- Resolution of corporation
- Carving and marking note
Upon appropriate qualification, the Registrar of ships, Republic of Seychelles or Maritime Commissioner will issue a provisional certificate of Registry valid for a period of 90 days. Extensions may be granted subject to approval with good reasons. Upon receipt of all necessary documents, originals or certified true copies, by the Maritime Commissioner, the Registrar of Ships will issue the permanent certificate of Registry for the said vessel.
Vessels below the age of 15 years are eligible to apply. If the vessel exceeds this age, then a seaworthiness certificate is required. A Survey to the effect that the vessel is in satisfactory trading state and will comply with all class and/or statutory (Convention or Non-Convention) requirements can and will be met is required.
If the criteria above is met. the vessel owners will have to incorporate an Offshore Company [IBC] before the certificate of provisional/permanent registration is issued.
Details of radios on board is also needed and an application for a radio license from Telecom Department will be submitted.
For fishing vessels, details of trading areas, refrigeration/cutting areas etc., are needed for an application of sanitary license from Seychelles Fishing Authority. All Seychelles Registered Fishing vessels have to obtain inter-alia fishing license from SFA, be fitted with a Vessel Monitoring System (VMS); call at an approved post for transshipment of fish, and have to produce Annual catch records for auditing etc., Vessels have to respect all International conventions on fishing.