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Brussels, 25 February 2009

Commission authorises Irish tonnage tax amendment

The Commission decided today to authorise an amendment of the Irish tonnage tax related to time charter rules as it contributes to the development of Community maritime policy.

In 2002 the Commission approved the Irish tonnage tax scheme until the year 2012. In 2007 the Irish authorities notified their intention to modify the 'time charter' rules thereof. A time chartered ship is chartered with crew for a rather short period of time. The 2002 tonnage tax allowed for a ratio of 1-owned to 3-time chartered ships (1:3).

Following today's Commission approval, for every owned vessel a company may have 10-time chartered vessels that will be allowed to benefit from the Irish tonnage tax provided that every time chartered ship is either:

  • registered in a Community or EEA maritime register or
  • its crew management and its technical management are carried out on the territory of the Community or the EEA.

The Commission considers that under the above conditions the change of the time charter ceiling can contribute to the Community's interests in the field of maritime policy.

The approved amendment may be applied as from 1 January 2007.

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