Archive for May, 2016

Directive 2013/53/EC on Recreational Craft and Personal Watercraft

Directive 2013/53/EC of 20 November 2013 on recreational craft and personal watercraft repealed Directive 94/25/EC seeking to update the  legislation covering the design and manufacture of motor and sailing yachts, in an attempt to ensure that by having the same standards in place, fair competition is created for these products in the EU market.

The Directive sets out requirements for manufacturers, importers and distributors of watercraft and builds on legislation adopted in 2003 which included limits on engine exhaust emissions (CO, HC, NOx and particulates) and noise levels to reflect technological developments that have resulted in improved environmental performance.

  • Design Categories:

The new directive specifies design categories (A, B, C and D) for boats, based on suitability for navigation conditions such as ranges of wind force and significant wave height.

  • CE marking

All watercraft, designated components and propulsion engines are subject to CE marking, indicating that a product complies with the relevant EU legislation. CE marking has to be affixed on the craft builder’s plate, mounted separately from the craft’s identification number in the case of watercraft and directly on the engine in the case of a propulsion engine.

Other essential requirements include:

  • an identification number for each watercraft and a requirement to carry the craft’s builder’s plate;
  • the need for craft to be designed to minimise the risk of falling overboard and to allow for easy reboarding;
  • good all-round visibility for the operator, under normal conditions;
  • a written manual to accompany all craft to ensure their safe use;
  • sufficient structure, stability and buoyancy in accordance with its design category;
  • an emergency stopping device for all tiller-controlled outboard propulsion engines.

Manufacturers must comply with the directive’s requirements by 18 January 2017, while small and medium-sized enterprises that manufacture some smaller outboard spark-ignition propulsion engines have until 18 January 2020.

The Cyprus Department of Merchant Shipping issued a circular on the 11th May 2016 regarding the arrangements for the implementation of the said Directive 2013/53 / EC. The domestic harmonizing regulations, under the heading “The Basic Requirements (Recreational Craft and Personal Watercraft) Regulations 2016” are expected to be placed before the Parliament for approval in the following months.

 

We are proud to announce that we have been selected by Corporate Livewire – Offshore Excellence Awards 2016 winners in the Category Cyprus Financial Services Law Firm of the Year

Christodoulos G. Vassiliades & Co LLC is proud to announce that Corporate Livewire, a group that provides business professionals and individuals in the corporate finance sector with information on the latest news and developments from around the globe has selected our firm as winner of Offshore Excellence Awards 2016 in the Category Cyprus Financial Services Law Firm of the Year.

Offshore Excellence Awards 2016_Corporate Livewire

Corporate Livewire’s new Offshore Excellence Awards celebrate the achievements of those whom excel in offshore industries. These awards recognise outstanding company success, safety and technology innovations and exceptional individual performance within dedicated categories across every aspect of offshore business, including finance and law, maritime, energy, and oil & gas.

Our firm owes its success to its highly experienced and qualified lawyers, broad network of international contacts and representative offices, which enables it to provide clients with the services they desire, promptly and effectively.

Our Financial Services Practice Group relies on the strength and experience of its team members who have strong academic credentials and experience in the field of financial services. The group regularly advises financial institutions as well as institutional and individual clients on related questions.

2016 proves to be an extremely successful year for us and we have shown once again excellence not only in our expertise but in service.

We pride ourselves in providing excellent service to all our clients and are particularly pleased when our efforts are recognised and rewarded.

We are proud to announce that we have been selected winners of IAE M&A (Cyprus) 2016 Award by International Advisory Experts

We are proud to announce that International Advisory Experts, a global alliance of well-established and experienced legal, financial and consulting firms that are committed to providing clients with specialist solutions for their international business requirements, has selected Christodoulos G. Vassiliades & Co LLC for IAE M&A (Cyprus) award for 2016.

IAE Award

International Advisory Experts annual awards pay tribute to firms who have been successful over the past 12 months and have received exceptional praise from their peers. All nominees are researched by IAE research team and group members and potential winner shortlists are created for each jurisdiction and practice area. All nominees are then analysed by an independent panel and winners are chosen and informed.

The IAE group currently has experts from over 140 jurisdictions and these firms are cutting-edge-go-ahead practices that are committed to offering first class advice, with the joint potential to find the right solution for any specific problem and so resolve any legal, financial and tax issues which may arise.

Christodoulos G. Vassiliades & Co LLC owes its success to its highly experienced and qualified lawyers, broad network of international contacts and representative offices, which enables it to provide clients with the services they desire, promptly and effectively.

Our M&A lawyers have a strong and long track record in M&A transactions, having dealt with numerous domestic and cross-border transactions. We offer advice on strategy and optimal structures, carry out due diligence on a target, engage in negotiations and prepare all requisite documentation to complete the deal.

2016 proves to be an extremely successful year for us and we have shown once again excellence not only in our expertise but in service.

We pride ourselves in providing excellent service to all our clients and are particularly pleased when our efforts are recognised and rewarded.

We are proud to announce that we have been awarded Corporate & M&A Law Firm of the Year- Cyprus by Deal Makers

We are proud to announce that DealMakers, a Monthly Magazine which is an established global Deal reporting publication reaching out to a variety of readers to include CEO/CFO – Banks, Corporate Lawyers and Venture Capital/ Private Equity Companies to name a few, has selected Christodoulos G. Vassiliades & Co LLC as Corporate & M&A Law Firm of the Year – Cyprus.

DealMakers Country Awards 2016

The 2016 DealMakers Country Awards recongises a small number of leading professional firms from across the globe for their individual areas of specialisation. The 2016 DealMakers Country Awards recognises and salutes those firms and individuals that have performed to exceptional levels during one of the most difficult economic periods that the global economy has experienced for decades.

This year the Magazine sent out over 87,000 electronic voting forms and by close of business on Friday 2nd April 2016, over 22,800 votes were received, demonstrating a 26% response rate. The poll represents who the readership believes are the leading professional firms within the various areas of specialisation across the various geographical regions.

Christodoulos G. Vassiliades & Co LLC owes its success to its highly experienced and qualified lawyers, broad network of international contacts and representative offices, which enables it to provide clients with the services they desire, promptly and effectively.

Our M&A lawyers have a strong and long track record in M&A transactions, having dealt with numerous domestic and cross-border transactions. We offer advice on strategy and optimal structures, carry out due diligence on a target, engage in negotiations and prepare all requisite documentation to complete the deal.

2016 proves to be an extremely successful year for us and we have shown once again excellence not only in our expertise but in service.

We pride ourselves in providing excellent service to all our clients and are particularly pleased when our efforts are recognised and rewarded.

 

Ourania Vrondou’s Article “Crowdfunding: The Move Towards Online Value” made front page on the Trademark Lawyer Website

Ourania Vrondou, Christodoulos G. Vassiliades & Co LLC investigates the process of crowd funding, and how it is an advantageous way to build and protect your brand in today’s technologically shrewd society.

The Article under the title “Crowdfunding: The move towards online value” made front page on the Trademark Lawyer Website Follow this Link

The Article consists of:

  1. The Possibility of creating a brand from scratch
  2. Enhancing existing brand-value
  3. Tax-Motivated Crowdfunding – The BEPS 5 guidelines
  4. The move towards online value: is it more than a mere mirage?
  5. Conclusion.

For further analysis, please Read More

 

Christodoulos G. Vasilliades & Co LLC publishes Cyprus: International Trusts 2016

Christodoulos G. Vassiliades & Co LLC has published Cyprus: International Trusts 2016. The publication consists of:

  1. Introduction;
  2. Cyprus Trust Law;
  3. Types of Trusts;
  4. Trustees;
  5. Beneficiaries;
  6. International Trusts Law;
  7. Shams;
  8. 1976 Convention on Recognitions and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments (Foreign Judgments (Force Heirship);
  9. Taxation;
  10. Advantages of a Cyprus Trust;
  11. Registration of Trusts.

For further details, read below full publication

PDF_ENG

PDF_RUS

Revision of High Risk Area

On the 10th December 2015 the Joint War Committee in London decided for the revision and reduction of the Hull War, Piracy Terrorism and Related Perils Listed Area, hereinafter referred to as the HRA.

The revision for the HRA was proposed by BIMCO and its co-sponsors following the effective counter piracy measures implemented with the introduction of Best Maritime Practices 4 (BMP4) which introduced the use of anti-piracy patrols by naval assets, use of armed guards on board vessels and the use of intelligence gathered by MSCHOA, UKMTO and ICC respectively.

Such measures were the decisive blow in deterring and combating pirate attacks against ships transiting through the HRA which is backed by the decline in 2012 up until 2014 which was the last confirmed attack on a ship as seen by the figures in the below table.

IMB Statistics provide the following data on attacks carried out by Somali pirates:

  Attacks Hijackings Crew Taken Hostage Crew Deaths
2015 0 0 0 0
2014 12 0 0 0
2013 15 2 34 0
2012 75 14 212 0
2011 237 28 470 8
2010 219 49 1016 8
2009 217 47 867 4

Based on the abovementioned figures and also the pressure to reduce operating costs for shipping companies the revision of the HRA was only imminent.

The High Risk Area is now defined as being bounded by: 

In the Red Sea:                    Latitude 15oN

In the Gulf of Oman:          Latitude 22o

N Eastern limit:                   Longitude 065oE

Southern limit:                     Latitude 5oS

Benefits for shipping companies

Most significant benefit for shipping companies will be the significant reduction in terms of their insurance costs especially for Hull War Risk insurance premiums whilst transiting through the new HRA.

Such policy covers damage or loss attributed to acts of war, invasion, insurrection and other interventions by foreign state power or piracy but specifically excludes coverages from hazardous regions within the HRA or listed areas as provided by JWLA/022 (Link to site: http://www.google.com.cy/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&ved=0ahUKEwjRspXf4ZfMAhUDnBoKHTlvD4oQFggeMAE&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.lmalloyds.com%2FAsiCommon%2FControls%2FBSA%2FDownloader.aspx%3FiDocumentStorageKey%3D001f4a07-7dde-46fb-9c16-770a419a2d0b%26iFileTypeCode%3DPDF%26iFileName%3DJWLA022&usg=AFQjCNGAUjjOml62ruMOW11Q4eeZ2oy0QA

Should the operator wish to maintain coverage he ought to have informed the underwriter in advance of the passage and payed the War Risk Added Premium           (WRAP). The reduction means that fewer ships will require WRAP and those that do require it will be for less days which corresponds to less money payable to the underwriters.

A significant benefit is now witnessed with tankers transiting from the Persian Gulf to the western coast of India or East Asia which has been removed from the HRA thus increasing profits for their operators.

Disadvantages for Private Maritime Security Companies (PMSCs)

Without any doubt the PMSC industry will be affected most of all as not only this is an over supplied market, the reduction of the HRA will equate to less transits needing armed guards on board ships.

Also the high cost both on a financial and logistical aspect coupled with the fact that embarkation and disembarkation opportunities are significantly further away from the revised HRA entry points this means that security guards will be travelling for significantly more days before their services are needed.

For example following the embarkation of a team from Suez they will have to transit all the way down to Djibouti until they reach the new HRA which is approximately 2-3 days of transit. Also the same applies for a team embarking from Galle until they reach the revised HRA as the opportunities to embark or disembark in the Indian Ocean exist at the entry and exit points of the ocean.

This will drive shipping clients to push fees for the PMSCs even lower.

Concerns

What is everyone’s main concern is that the reduction of the HRA might have negative consequences and we might be witnessing a new era of piracy.

Also a huge concern is that PMSCs might turn to more cost effective solutions when it comes to the guards they employ in order to make up for their costs which could potentially mean low quality services and inability to deter a pirate attack when faced with one.

Only time will tell what is about to unfold in the next couple of months.

 

Department of Merchant Shipping Circular No.13/2016 : Update on Reporting Formalities through the SafeSeaNet platform

Circular No. 13/2016 of the Department of Merchant Shipping, dated 26th April 2016, re-issued the guidelines related to ships calling at Cyprus ports .

The required information as per the procedures under the EU Reporting Formalities Directive and the Reporting Formalities for Ships Arriving-Departing from Ports of the Republic Law of 2012,  shall be provided online through the SafeSeaNet (SSN) European Platform for Maritime Data Exchange:

  • The Notification Prior to Entry into the Ports of Member States;
  • The Notification of Dangerous or Polluting Goods carried on board;
  • The Notification of  Waste and Residues ;
  • The Notification of Security Information;
  • The Notification 72 hours before arrival , actual time of arrival and estimated time of departure under Port State Control;

It is noted that the operator, master or agent of a ship must notify in electronic format through the CYPOS of the Cyprus Ports Authority, 24 hours before the time of arrival at the port or anchorage or from its departure from a foreign port, given the duration of the journey is less than 24hrs of the below:

  • Waste and Residues
  • Security Information

The Circular No.13/2010 is effective as of the 26th April 2016 and does not annul or replace any relevant procedures currently in force.