Maritime Cook Islands (“MCI”), an international ship registry, is planning for another year of expansion after a solid performance in 2017.

Despite the continuing challenging times in shipping, MCI says 2017 saw it make significant progress on several fronts.

Fleet growth

For 2017, MCI registered 130 new vessels. Our fleet grew by 3.6%; from 557 vessels at the end of 2016 to 577 (as of 13 December 2017). 

With 451,792 gross tonnage (GT) added for 2017, this brings the total GT for 2017 to 1,840,614 (as of 16 December 2017). This represents an increase of 3.76% from 2016’s total GT. 

Average age of vessel is 16.96 years.

Implementation of newly-enhanced technical department’s plan

In February 2017, MCI significantly enhanced its technical department and relocated it to Italy , in the process making a  series of senior appointments., The department now has a much stronger presence in the key European market following the appointments of: 

  • Paolo Favilli who heads the department
  • Rachele Andreani as Technical Manager responsible for ISM/MLC and ISPS
  • Andrea Emanuele Pippa as Technical Manager for surveyors and all other conventions
  • Brendan Smith responsible for non-convention vessels

These appointments represented a major upgrade and clients in the important European region and time zone stand to benefit most from the move.

In 2018, the newly-enhanced technical department will be rolling out a plan to improve the profile and performance of MCI’s fleet. 

MCI CEO Glenn Armstrong said: “For 2018 , we shall be focusing on assisting our owners comply with the requirements of the ISM Code through Flag State inspections and other areas in which we can support. In cases where we find issues which need to be remedied with our greater support, we will apply additional safety management audits.

He added: “Our experience shows that most Port State Control issues stem from failures to comply with the ISM Code and we believe these actions will help our owners as well as improve our overall fleet performance.”

“Going forward our flag state inspection regime will be more rigorous. Our support for Port State Control will include greater risk management and we will aim to identify and fix problems before they arise,” Glenn said.

Growing the yacht business

At the annual Deputy Registrars Conference in June 2017, MCI CEO Glenn Armstrong, shared how MCI is approaching 1% of the world's tonnage and is positive about achieving this target in 2018. After which, the goal is to become a major player in the yacht registration business.

He also shared how MCI will continue to develop products for the yacht market and ramp up marketing to yacht owners, specifically superyacht owners.

Mobilizing more women into the maritime industry

Following the relaunch of Pacific Women in Maritime Association (PacWiMA) in 2016, the Cook Islands Women in Maritime Association (CIWiMA) was formed, in line with one of PacWiMA’s key objectives – to assist with the establishment of women in national maritime associations in the Pacific region.

CIWiMA’s inaugural general meeting took place in June this year, where its first Executive Committee was elected.

The committee aims to actively mobilize more women into the industry – for both shore-based as well as sea-going positions, alongside promoting women in the maritime sector.

Commits support to Marae Moana Act, the world’s largest multi-use marine park

To protect and conserve the marine environment, and ocean surrounding Cook Islands, the Parliament of the Cook Islands  formally established Marae Moana, the world’s largest multi-use marine park, in August 2017.

Moving forward, MCI will work closely with the Marae Moana coordinators towards ensuring vessels entering within and beyond the marine park’s boundaries comply and respect the sanctity of the Marae Moana Act.

Closely and actively advocating Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives

YWAM Medical Ships as well as Sailing Cook Islands were the two main beneficiaries receiving financial and administrative support from the registry in 2017. Vessels under these charities received complimentary flag registration and vessel certification, courtesy of MCI. 

On top of that, MCI is a sponsor of Fins Attached, a US-based non-profit organization aimed at saving the world’s shark population and promoting preservation as essential for the global ecosystem. The organization’s mission resonates closely with the above-mentioned Marae Moana, another initiative that MCI supports, which emphasizes on preserving the marine ecosystem.

As a sponsor, MCI has assisted in the successful registration of the organization’s 134-feet research vessel, Sharkwater, under the Cook Islands flag, and look towards promoting the organization’s objectives more actively in 2018.

MCI also supported open water swimmer, Dan Abel’s circumnavigation swim around Rarotonga, Cook Islands in September 2017, in an effort to raise funds for the kids at Autism Cook Islands.

MCI CEO, Glenn Armstrong said: “2017 has been a fruitful year despite the prevailing market challenges, and we are all-geared up for 2018 as we strive towards becoming one of the top registries in the world.”