Good news for cruising boats in Greece
Following months of controversy regarding the new Greek circulation tax, the Greek government has introduced two changes which cut harbour dues.
Until August 1 harbour dues in Greece were collected by the Hellenic Coast Guard, colloquially known as Port Police or PP. Fees comprised an entry charge (paid per visit) and a berthing charge, payable from midnight to midnight for each day the boat was in port. They were charged per metre LOA, plus VAT.
The changes introduced mean the entry fees are no longer payable. Secondly, berthing fees will now be collected by the municipal or local authority (Limeniko Tameo) responsible for managing the quay. Advance payments for a month or more will earn discounts.
Marina fees, which broadly seem to include any quays or pontoons privately managed, will be collected as before, by the marina operator.
Jim Baerselman from the Cruising Association said:
“The old system of hunting down a port police office hidden in some tiny back street was very unpopular, both with the port police, and for visitors. The net result was that large numbers of cruising folk just didn’t pay, and there has been very limited investment in quayside facilities.
“Dropping the entry fee is welcome. And if collection agents now come to the boat, far more people will happily pay harbour dues. Genuine agents will offer a tax receipt.
“From now on, visits to the port police will be only be required (1) on entering the country, or (2) once a year after that to have your DEKPA or transit log (Greek cruising papers) checked for the new Circulation tax (TPP) payments. This is the controversial tax which came into force in January this year but there is still no indication if or when TPP collection will start.
The CA has been given a detailed schedule of the local authority fees payable:
1. Arrival dues = zero
In the past, those dues varied from 0,02 euro to 0,30 euro per metre, depending on the type of boat, and were payable each time a boat came into the harbour
2. Berth-mooring dues (stern to or bows to the quay)
a. Private “small” boats, i.e. boats of LOA up to 7m = 0,03 euro per day per metre
b. Private pleasure boats/yachts
· of LOA fm 7,01m to 10m = 0,41 euro per day per metre
· of LOA fm 10,01m to 15m = 0,47 euro per day per metre
· of LOA over 15,01m = 0,55 euro per day per metre
c. Traditional boats/yachts (private or commercial, irrespective of LOA) = 0,08 euro per day per metre
d. Commercial (charter) boats, LOA (irrespective of LOA) = 0,20 euro per day per metre
e. Commercial boats/ships (of any type/LOA engaged in daily-cruise/excursion - art. 12 L.4256/2014) = 0,08 euro per day per metre
3. Alongside berthing is subject to 25% surcharge
4. The dues mentioned in para 2 and para 3 are subject to discount:
· 20% if paid in advance for 1 month
· 30% if paid in advance for 6 months
· 40% if paid in advance for 1 year
5. Laid-up vessels (special berthing dues for 1 year, payable by 1st March)
Private “small” boats, i.e. boats of LOA up to 7m = 70 euro
All other = 280 euro
6. All the dues mentioned above a) have to be collected by the Limeniko Tameo, not the Port Police and b) are subject to VAT
7. Boats/yachts participating in a race are exempted from the payment of the dues during the race.
Greek Tax (TPP); Relaxation of Port Police Procedures (as at 30 June 2014)
A new Greek Tax, often referred to as TPP, will be collected once procedures are fully defined. This should take place some time in 2014. When it is introduced, there will be a transition period during which no penalties will apply. File attachments at the bottom of this page give full details of the TPP, and some clarifications given to the Cruising Association by the responsible Greek Ministry .
Meanwhile, a further law (4256) came into effect on 14 April 2014. (English Translation) This law describes revised Port Police procedures introducing a considerable relaxation of formalities for cruising boats, and some changes to insurance certificate requirements.
Port Police (PP, more correctly called "Hellenic Coast Guard") throughout Greece have been told of the new procedures, but in June some were still ignoring instructions and clinging to old procedures (visits every 30 days). Most simplifications to regulations we have suggested have been implemented. So far, the following is clear:
Local fees for electricity, water, and pick-up lines, and daily port fees may be payable.
New arrivals in Greece from outside Schengen no longer have to use a port of entry, but must notify PP and provide two copies of Schengen entry document. Effectively this means entering at a PP manned port. The Greek ministry confirms that it is not necessary to use an agent when checking in, whatever local sources may say.
For a variety of reasons, if leaving Greek waters for another country, we think it will still be prudent to check out, especially if non-EU crews exit the Schengen zone.
Insurance certificates should cover the amounts listed below:
Ships of total tonnage smaller than 300 gt are obliged to have insurance for:
i) civil liability for bodily harm or death of the passengers and
third parties because of collision, crash, sinking or any other cause. The
insurance sum is fixed to fifty
ii) civil liability for material damage of the passengers and
third parties because of collision, crash, sinking or any other cause. The
insurance sum is fixed to one
iii) Cause of sea pollution. The insurance sum is fixed to one hundred and fifty thousand (150.000) euros.
b. The insurance contract is drawn up in Greek or English.
The old limits (which is what most policies covered in 2013) were €300,000 for bodily injury or death, €150,000 for third-party, and €90,000 for sea pollution. If you do not have a certificate covering this year's limits, contact your insurers to obtain a new certificate.
The LOA defined in your registration documents will be used in calculations, rounded up to the nearest tenth of a metre.
The aim is to introduce TPP during 2014, and the timing is uncertain. A period of transition will follow after introduction during which penalties are very unlikely.
Multiple methods for paying TPP are being arranged: on-line; through port police, tax offices and agents; and possibly through banks. Cash, credit or debit cards can be used by most collecting methods.
Boats stored ashore do not have to produce receipts for this tax – they are treated as if they were not in Greek waters. We have also asked if boats can be laid up (“put out of use”) afloat, and therefore not have to produce receipts. This may be possible if boats hand in their papers, and are moored in specified locations, such as registered marinas. The idea has been welcomed, but we wait for further news.
This tax applies to all boats, including non-EU boats, afloat in Greek ports and marinas, or anchoring or mooring in Greek waters. Once the tax is introduced, the intention is that non-EU boats will no longer pay the 3 month transit log fee.
There are no rebates for boats leaving Greek waters, whether hauling out, or by going to another country.
Boats 12.1m or More
The full rate of tax for these boats will very rarely have to be paid. For a full calendar year it is €(100 x LOA) - or €1,240 for a 12.4m boat. Two options exist to reduce this payment:
Boats over 12m which try to evade paying this tax face a harsh penalty if caught – they have to pay twice the full annual rate due.
We asked if “month” can be defined as a 30 day period from payment, rather than a calendar month. This is to avoid start of month/end of month queues for launch or lift out. This is being investigated, but may not be feasible with the current payment software and system.
Boats 12m or Less
Boats of 12m and less pay a single fee, either when they arrive in Greece, or on launching. This will permit them to cruise for the rest of that calendar year in Greek waters. There are three bands: 7.1m to 8m, €200; 8.1m to 10m, €300; and 10.1m to 12m, €400.
The Greek ministry of Maritime Affairs and Aegean is aware that this rate may discourage some <12m boats from visiting Greece.
Gr Gazette translation.pdf 452.61 KB
by The Cruising Association
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