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12° Nicosia,
23 May, 2024
 

'One Stop Shipping Centre' launched to boost competitiveness

Shipping Ministry's modern service streamlines operations and sets course for industry growth

By Andreas Karamitas

The One Stop Shipping Centre has set sail in Cyprus, marking a significant development for the Cypriot shipping industry. Launched by the Shipping Deputy Ministry, this modern service aims to boost the competitiveness of the Cyprus Register of Shipping. The initiative may lead to the registration of more ships under the Cyprus Flag and attract new Shipping Companies.

The 'Single Window Service' system, introduced by the Shipping Deputy Ministry, streamlines customer and trader requests. Users can submit requests at a central point, ensuring efficient handling by the relevant department or officer. This approach enhances the efficiency, flexibility, and quality of services, particularly in sectors involving State Public Administration.

Although the center's launch doesn't signal its completion, it has already seen immediate use by companies, primarily for services related to the Ministry of Interior. The Shipping Deputy Ministry collaborated closely with the Civil Registry and Migration Department of the Ministry of Interior, facilitating the seamless operation of the center.

The Centre, located in the central offices of the Shipping Deputy Ministry building, receives applications every Monday. It handles physical presence requirements, including the issuance of Certificates of Registration for EU/EEA nationals and Residence Certificates for their non-EU/EEA family members. Additionally, it manages Temporary Residence and Employment Permits for third-country nationals employed by Shipping Companies, along with arrangements for their family members' residence.

Looking ahead, the One-stop Maritime Service Centre plans to expand its services beyond Civil Registry and Immigration matters. The Shipping Deputy Ministry recognizes the evolving needs of the industry, suggesting the inclusion of services related to social security, labor, and tax issues in the future.

In a significant legislative move, the House of Representatives approved the creation of the Maritime Limited Liability Company in October 2022. This decision, welcomed by the shipping industry, changes procedures for establishing and registering Limited Liability Shipping Companies, supervised by the Shipping Deputy Ministry. The new law simplifies various procedures and grants powers to the Shipping Deputy Ministry for the entity's smooth operation.

In conclusion, Cyprus Shipping plays a crucial role in the country's economy, providing 7% of its GDP. Beyond economic contributions, its collaboration with the State ensures viability, functionality, and sustainability. The industry remains forward-looking, with ongoing developments expected, including a shift towards digitalization for a paperless environment in the Shipping Deputy Ministry's operations.

[This article was translated from its Greek original and may have been edited for brevity]

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