At the time and throughout its registration in Malta, a merchant vessel must be classed by an authorised Classification Society. An authorised Classification Society is an organisation which inspects and surveys vessels. Importantly, these organisations are authorised by the Government of Malta (and other States) to carry out statutory inspections and give out statutory certifications on behalf of the respective Governments.

The Government of Malta lists the Classification Societies which are authorised to give out said certificates. However, being a part of the European Union (EU), Malta is only permitted to recognize Classification Societies which are recognized by the EU.

The list of Classification Societies is currently the following:

  • American Bureau of Shipping (ABS)
  • Bureau Veritas (BV)
  • China Classification Society (CCS)
  • Croatian Register of Shipping (CRS)
  • ClassNK (NK)
  • Det Norske Veritas (DNV)
  • Indian Register of Shipping (IRS)
  • Korean Register of Shipping (KRS)
  • Lloyd's Register (LR)
  • Polish Register of Shipping (PRS)
  • Registro Italiano Navale (RINA)

Noticeably, this list has recently been revised so as to remove the Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RMRS). This Classification Society is no longer authorised to issue certificates on behalf of the Government of Malta for vessels with the Malta flag. This amendment has taken immediate effect.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.