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MS Deutschland Chided For Symbolic Flag Change

by Ulrika Lomas, Tax-News.com, Brussels

20 June 2012


The operator of the German cruise liner the MS Deutschland has drawn significant fire, both from the government and unions, for its decision to abandon the German shipping registry, and operate under the more competitive Maltese flag.

Operators Deilmann have disclosed that the well-known 175m vessel, emblazoned with its nation's name, will decamp from the German shipping registry from July, on the back of a decision from the German government to cease offering concessions that 'offset the significant cost disadvantages' of operating under the German flag.

Deilmann has been in talks with the German government with the aim of staying on the German register but no satisfactory solution was found. The Deutschland is the last cruise liner to operate under the German flag.

It is said that, with the move to Malta, Deilmann is seeking a more predictable operational environment with the same advantages enjoyed by competitors.

It has been estimated that the decision may cut the liner's costs by more than EUR250,000 (USD315,000), as flagging under the Maltese register will provide Deilmann with a number of tax exemptions, including on profits, and competitive annual fees. Malta also provides additional benefits such as eased administrative procedures and reduced costs.

TAGS: tonnage tax | tax | marine | Malta | fees | Germany

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