On March 17, the Merchant shipping Directorate of Transport Malta announced three extraordinary measures in view of the current COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, the MS Notice 158 introduces the following:

  • Shipowners, Managers and Operators encountering difficulties in repatriating seafarers following the expiration of the Seafarer’s Employment Agreement may, on a case-by-case basis request to extend the validity of the Agreement for a maximum period of three months
  • Seafarers, in possession of a Certificate of Competency (CoC) issued by an Administration other than Malta but who are in possession of a Flag State Endorsement issued under the Merchant Shipping Act (and in terms of the STCW Convention), which may expire during an extended period on board, may extend the validity of their Flag State Endorsement by submitting a request to the Directorate.
  • Due to restrictions imposed by COVID-19, in cases when surveyors, auditors and/or inspectors are not able to undertake scheduled surveys, audit and inspections, the Directorate will consider requests for extension/postponement under force majeure or unforeseen exceptional circumstances, on a case by case basis.