Virgin Islands Shipping Registry

The Virgin Islands Shipping Registry, formally abbreviated to VISR, is the official maritime organization responsible for the registration of ships and enforcement of maritime regulations in the Virgin Islands. Registering your yacht of ship under the Virgin Islands flag will determine the rights, obligations and advantages the vessel will acquire. When deciding to register your vessel, it is advisable to enlist the services of a professional consultancy firm to guide you throughout the entire process.

Responsibilities of the VISR

It is important to choose the country for vessel registration based on the country’s ability to meet your maritime and financial related needs. Some flag states offer bespoke legislation in regards to the operation of vessels, while certain other countries will also allow for favorable tax planning and low registration costs.

The Virgin Islands Shipping Registry is a widely respected maritime registry and is responsible for the development, implementation and control of maritime policies as provided by the government of the Virgin Islands.  The registry’s primary aim is to promote and ensure the safety and security of vessels at sea within its range of scope. This means that the VISR has jurisdiction over VISR vessels navigating international waters, and foreign registered vessels navigating the registry’s territorial waters. Further, the VISR aims to ensure policies and measures are in place to prevent ship pollution.

The VISR was awarded a category 1 status by the UK Minister of Transport in 2007. A category 1 status allows a shipping registry to register a wider variety of vessels including general cargo ships with an unlimited tonnage, yachts weighing up to 3000 gross tons, and all other types of vessels under the category 2 status. This new status is a testament to the high standards that the VISR enforces.

The registry seeks to maintain health and safety at sea by requiring a high level of training and certification to be attained by seafarers in addition to onshore employees and operators.

However, the VISR is known in principle for its responsibilities for registering ships and yachts. The registry aims to provide  registered vessel owners with ongoing support and freedom in regards to operating their vessels in line with the applicable Virgin Islands maritime laws. Additionally, the VISR provides up to date, reliable and accessible information to vessel owners on its policies, requirements and regulations that must be met.