As anticipated, companies were not lining up to bareboat register their ship on day one, but a few were ready to grab the opportunity. However, this was not done overnight. 

“A lot must be in place when ships are registered or removed from the Norwegian registers,” explains Tone Olsen Risnes, Senior Adviser at the Norwegian Ship Registers. 

The parties need a list of the requirements that need to be met to be registered in the primary and the bareboat register, as well as a lease agreement. Also, the mortgagee, the registered owner and the primary register must consent before the registration is completed.

Six bareboat-registered ships

As early as last summer, the Ship Registers started working on several registration processes, but it was not until September that the very first bareboat registration was completed, when a ship was bareboat chartered out to Brazil.  

Since then, a total of five ships have been bareboat registered in NIS, and one in NOR. Four are general cargo ships, one is an offshore vessel, and the last one is a chemical tanker. Four of the six ships were transferred to the Norwegian flag from Panama, one came from Cyprus and the last one from the Faeroe Islands.

“They all have registered owners established in the country of primary registration. All but one of the ships have Norwegian charterers. The final charterer is Danish,” says Risnes.

Pleased to offer this arrangement

Three ships have been bareboat chartered out of NIS, and two out of NOR. These include three supply vessels, one construction vessel and one car ferry. Brazil is the new bareboat state for two of the ships, Cyprus for one, Panama for another, while the last ship is flying the German flag.

The flexibility offered with the opportunity to bareboat register for ten years, with a possible five-year extension, has already been used. The duration of the contracts that have been registered so far varies from a couple of years to a decade.

“We are very pleased to offer this arrangement and happy to see that companies are using it. There is no doubt that more ships would have been removed from the NIS and NOR ship registers, both now and in the future, if we had not started to offer bareboat registration like most bigger flag States have done for years,” says Risnes.