Government Look to Clear Turkish Waters of Inactive Vessels - Turkey

The UK Club have received the following update from Ersoy Bilgehan, regarding inactive vessels in Turkish waters.


The Turkish Parliament has ratified the omnibus bill numbered 7061 which includes a crucial amendment ("Amendment") to the Turkish Ports Act ("Act") and entrusts Harbour Masters with broad powers vis-à-vis all those who are interested in unattended, abandoned or inactive vessels (hereinafter jointly referred to as "Inactive Vessels") and wrecks within the legal areas of Turkish ports. The amendment entered into force on 5 December 2017 after being published in the Official Gazette.

We had explained in our client alert dated 4 May 2017 the circumstances under which a Harbour Master may apply to the Enforcement Courts for the sale of Inactive Vessels. The government has taken it further and with this amendment introduced even stricter measures applicable to Inactive Vessels.

The position prior to the Amendment

Measures applicable to wrecks and Inactive Vessels were previously stipulated by the Act and the Turkish Ports Regulation (“Regulation”). The Act provided for measures applicable to wrecks whereas the Regulation designated the sanctions that could be imposed on Inactive Vessels.

According to the former version of the Act, Harbour Masters were entitled to set a deadline for the owner, master and agent of a wreck that hindered the safety of navigation within the port’s jurisdiction to remove the wreck within the allotted time.


Members can read the full client alert on their website here.

Staff Author