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MENAS increases Nav Dues charges

After years of keeping a vital navigation service operating on the same income, Middle East Navigation Service (MENAS) says it has been forced to review its funding, to ensure it can continue to help keep seafarers safe and protect the marine environment in the Middle East Gulf.

MENAS has been providing Aids to Navigation (AtoN) in the Middle East Gulf since 1951, supplying seafarers with essential information regarding the location, route and configuration of obstacles and hazards. The service covers the cost of operating and maintaining AtoN, which include buoys, lighthouses and racons, through the collection of Navigational Light Dues, or Nav Dues, as they are more commonly known. Paid by shipowners relative to their net tonnage on their vessels’ first port of entry into the Gulf, the dues have remained at the same level since 2006.

However, the cost of providing MENAS Nav Aids has increased, particularly in the last two years, as well as the need to replace some major equipment items, such as DGPS transmitters.

MENAS says it has therefore had to make the difficult decision to change its charges. The new tariff includes an increase in the rate and the widening of the group of ships which will be asked to pay for the service.

“We have worked very hard to keep the Nav Dues charges at the same level since 2006 but due to the rising costs involved, we feel we have no other option than to increase them, because we want to provide the same services at the same quality,” says Peter Stanley, CEO of MENAS’ parent organisation, International Foundation for Aids to Navigation (IFAN).

“Without change, the income we receive would not be enough to fund the service sufficiently, compromising safety and the future of MENAS AtoN. I appreciate the extra cost may not be welcomed by shipowners, but we have to implement the tariff charge to ensure the safe navigation of vessels in the Gulf and the protection of the region’s marine environment.”

The new tariff will be implemented on 1st October 2023 and will be reviewed annually.

In recent years, MENAS says it has witnessed a trend for the trade to use smaller vessels, which currently do not pay dues, and some of these frequent users have quite significant fleets. MENAS believes it is only fair that these should now contribute towards the services that it provides, and it will be asking for payment from all owners/charterers of vessels above or equal to 8000 net tonnes in the future when they make their first port call in the Middle East Gulf.

The post MENAS increases Nav Dues charges appeared first on Latest Maritime & Shipping News Online – The Maritime Standard.

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