Maltese interest in our surrounding sea is natural. This year Transport Malta has registered a substantial interest by persons wishing to acquire a nautical licence, a licence that is obligatory for those wishing to pilot a boat in Maltese waters.
There are currently about 20,000 active nautical licences. A TM official confirmed there has been an increase of interest and demand this year, probably because people had more free time at their disposal as a result of the pandemic.
Transport Malta Senior Manager, Konrad Muscat, said there has been a percentage increase over previous years probably occasioned by a desire to mitigate current circumstances.
From May nautical licence exams have no longer been held at MCAST but have been organised by Transport Malta. Muscat said the licence may be acquired after following courses and completing an examination and is obligatory for those wishing to pilot a pleasure boat of up to 24 metres in length and equipped with 30 horsepower. The licence is valid in Malta’s territorial waters up to a distance of 12 miles off the coast and is valid for a ten-year period.
He said regulations have to be observed and breaches are subject to fines and even licence withdrawal.
Asked whether those in possession of a foreign nautical licence are also valid, Muscat said that as long as these conform to Transport Malta nautical licence requirements, these are valid.