Yesterday, the Minister for Business and Growth has presented a bill, making it possible for Denmark to ratify the Wreck Removal Convention and make adjustments pursuant to the EU Passenger Rights Regulation, and introducing new payment arrangements.
Removal of wrecks
The bill introduces an obligation for the ship owner to take out insurance against the expenses for the removal of wrecks. The bill means that, in the future, it will be easier to have the expenses for the removal of wrecks in Danish waters covered. The regulations will enter into force when the Convention enters into force. This is expected to take place in a couple of years.
Possibility of complaint
Once the act has been passed, ship passengers will have the right to complain about for example delays and lacking assistance to persons with disabilities. Hereby, ship passengers get the same consumer rights as passengers on planes, buses and trains. It is expected that the regulations will enter into force on 18 December 2012.
User’s fees will be introduced for certificates of competency and qualification. Furthermore, according to the bill, an annual fee will be imposed on ships registered on the Danish ship registries. On the other hand, the annual fee of DKK 6,000 paid by yachtsmen in connection with, inter alia, registration of transfer of ownership will be abolished. Ships worthy of preservation, such as old wooden ships, will be exempted from the annual registration fee in order to preserve the Danish cultural heritage. It is expected that the regulations will enter into force on 15 February 2013.
The master’s obligations
If a ship is in distress, the master is obliged to try to rescue the passengers on board. If the master neglects his obligations, the new bill makes it possible to punish him. It is expected that this provision will enter into force on 15 February 2013.
DMA, October 26, 2012