The Minister of Tourism and Transport, the Hon. Zane DeSilva recently travelled to Monte Carlo, Monaco to attend the Monaco Yacht Show.
The purpose of this trip for the Ministry of Tourism and Transport was to introduce the new Superyacht and Other Vessels (Miscellaneous) Act 2019 – in particular, its chartering provisions – to the superyacht fraternity, which gathers every year in Monte Carlo.
The Minister was able to lend valuable insight to the superyacht community through his participation as a speaker at the Marine Money Forum on 24 September, and co-host of the “Bermuda Breakfast” on 25 September.
Previously, the Superyachts Act made amendments to a series of Acts to create a tourism product that makes Bermuda more attractive as a destination for yachting, and for superyachts in particular. Implementation of the Act is intended to move superyachts from vessels that attend a single event for a limited time to vessels that stay in our waters and, in that way, create a charter industry.
The government anticipates Bermudians will benefit from the growth of the yachting industry through jobs associated with businesses that support the charters, and from fees that will go into the consolidated fund.
The Bermuda contingent who attended the Monaco Yacht Show was comprised of the Minister of Tourism and Transport, Zane DeSilva, Andy Burrows, CEO, and Lynesha Lightbourne, Business Development Manager, both of the Bermuda Business Development Agency (BDA), Nicholas Sansom, Chief Business Development Officer, Bermuda Shipping and Maritime Authority (BSMA), Mark Soares, Bermuda Yacht Services and Aideen Ratteray Pryse, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Tourism and Transport. Branding materials were provided by the Bermuda Tourism Authority.
The 12th Annual Marine Money Super Yacht Finance Forum involved a series of informative panel discussions with expertise drawn from across the superyacht industry. Panel topics included “Superyachts – The Next Generation” and “Ultra-High Net Wealth Perspective”.
Speaking on the panel “Destination Bermuda: Bermuda as a Yacht Destination, Bermuda as a Yacht Registry” gave the Ministry the chance to engage with an audience of yacht builders, managers, brokers, captains, legal advisors, financiers, and journalists - presenting an overview of Bermuda’s superyacht legislation. Minister DeSilva outlined elements of the transit, cruising and charter permits: the key application requirements, permits’ duration, applicable fees and duty-free scenarios.
Following the Minister’s presentation, Nicholas Sansom of the BSMA was able to supply an update on the Authority’s ship and yacht registry. In particular, Mr. Sansom emphasized the expansion of the ownership eligibility, which was approved by the Legislature during the summer 2019 session. Expanding the ownership eligibility and offering different incentive packages are keys to increasing the appeal of Bermuda’s Ship Registry.
On the following day, Wednesday, 25 September, the Ministry co-hosted with the BDA and BOAT International, a “Bermuda Breakfast” at the Monaco Yacht Club.
The Ministry’s partnership with BOAT International focuses on raising awareness and understanding of the new superyacht legislation to a global network of brokers, owners and builders. The “Bermuda Breakfast” served as an opportunity to deliver the message that Bermuda is open for superyacht chartering directly, and personally to targeted stakeholders. This event is part of a larger campaign, which will include advertorials that will appear in the December editions of two key trade publications, ahead of the laws coming into effect in January 2020.
Bermuda’s participation in these two events, as well as associated receptions and meetings, was very well received with keen interest expressed by those in the superyacht industry to learn more about opportunities to charter here.
The Ministry is aware that superyacht captains have pressed for Bermuda to participate in the charter industry and believes that Bermuda has a winning formula for success. This is a new beginning for Bermuda’s superyacht industry and adds to the diversification of the tourism industry.