The Croatian government has implemented a new regulation that requires all superyachts over 45m to appoint a local agent, should they wish to cruise in Croatian territorial waters. This new regulation is an extension of the European Union’s Directive 2002/59/EC, a directive that previously only applied to commercial vessels in Croatia.
Directive 2002/59/EC aims to improve maritime safety, port and maritime security, environmental protection and pollution preparedness by efficiently monitoring maritime traffic and transport. The implementation of Directive 2002/59/EC in Croatia requires vessels, now including yachts over 45m, to be monitored by the Croatian Maritime Information System (CIMIS), which can only be used by registered Croatian marine agents.
This latest iteration of European maritime law could not come at a less opportune moment with the Mediterranean season in full swing. Had the change been implemented before the season began, headaches may well have been avoided.
“As of now, if a superyacht over 45m arrives at any Croatian port without an agent, the customs office will not grant it clearance,” explains Dorijan Dujmic, a representative from BWA’s Croatian office.
This small, and otherwise benign, change of regulation should, in theory, cause very little disruption to the Croatian superyacht market. However, this is dependent on charter brokers, yacht management teams and captains being informed in a timely and concise manner to ensure errors are avoided in Croatian waters and the necessary agencies are contacted in advance.