Until now, the chartering of recreational vessels had been reserved to vessels from European countries, which were subject to Spanish legislation. “There has been a sharp increase in this activity in our community over recent years,” a circular submitted by Antonio Deudero Mayans, director general of Ports and Airports in the Balearics, explained. “As a result of this greater demand, a large number of operators have stated to us their wish to carry out the activity with craft from third countries. In other words, from outside the European Union or the European Economic Area.”
Miguel Ángel Serra Guasch, lawyer at Garrigues, was involved in the legal consultation process as a representative of the National Association of Nautical Business in Spain (ANEN) alongside lawyer León Von Ondarza representing The Spanish Association of Superyachts (AEGY). “The ability to charter non-EU flag yachts over 14m in the Balearics has been a demand of the nautical sector and is an issue that we have been working on, jointly with ANEN, for a long time,” he explains. “Having been evaluated by the government and its juridical services, they have decided to allow non-EU flags to charter in the Balearics, provided that the proper administrative authorisation is obtained from the Balearic Government. This means that it will be necessary to file the usual documentation about insurance, tax and certificates and provide evidence that there are no EU-flagged yachts available to provide the service."
Combined with the recent Spanish fiscal reforms, this news is timely as the region looks forward to increasingly opening up to the superyacht industry. Network Marine Consultants has announced the change as “further good news for the Balearic charter market” and Guasch comments that; “This is very good news for the whole nautical sector, not only the owners and charterers but also for the shipyards, marinas and all service providers in the Balearics.”