Italy is in Danger of Losing 20,000 Jobs At Sea And 500 Ships
80% of the Italian merchant fleet in Italy might leave the national flag.
With the introduction of some substantial modifications to the international register and tonnage tax regime, through a pair of amendments in the European Law 2015, currently under discussion in the Italian Parliament.
The Italian shipowners association Confitarma reveals that Trieste-based senator Roberto Cociancich is trying to bring about these amendments in their shipping rules. Confitarma also alarms that Italy will lose some 20,000 jobs at sea and 500 ships if these two amendments are approved.
At least 80% of the Italian merchant fleet, i.e. all the vessels deployed on the international routes, will leave the national flag for some other European flags and probably many companies will also opt for relocating their offices abroad as they will lose fiscal benefits granted from the international register only to the vessels embarking with 100% Italian or EU personnel.
According to the statistics released by Confitarma, as of 31 December 2014, there were 1,503 ships under the Italian flag (a decrease from 1,564 in 2013): 273 are tankers, 202 bulk carriers, 440 roro and ropax vessels, 587 service ships (tugs, OSV, etc) and one obo. In the last decade Italians shipowners invested more than $15bn in renovating their fleets and 436 newbuildings were delivered.