Boat Registration in Hong Kong

Boat Registration in Hong Kong

Updated on Thursday 21st October 2021

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Owning a boat in Hong Kong

Hong Kong is not only a business destination, but also a beautiful touristic destination that offers access to one of the liveliest and busy cities in the world. People living in Hong Kong and those on business or pleasure trips may be interested in exploring the coastal waters surrounding the city.
If you are passionate about water sports and want to purchase a boat to sail in Hong Kong’s coastal waters, our lawyers in Hong Kong can help you make the necessary arrangements, secure the deal with the seller and register your boat at the Hong Kong authorities.

Licences for pleasure vessels in Hong Kong

Hong Kong has 263 islands surrounding it and a coastline of 733 kilometers. Sailing, surfing, boating and other water-relates leisure activities are popular and tourists and locals enjoy them alike. If you own a pleasure vessel (a Class IV vessel) you must register it and also insure it. A boat owner must first apply for the Operating Licence for the vessel and fill the application form. The form must be submitted to the Marine Department, together with the following documents:
- letter of approval from the Director of Marine (if applicable);
- the identity card/ certificate of incorporation of the owner of the vessel in original;
- proof of the owner’s name and address (correspondence, no older than 6 months);
- certificate or document proving the emission level of the diesel engine (if applicable);
- copy of the vessel’s third party risk insurance policy;
- photographs of the vessel;
- licence fee.
Other documents will be required if the owner of the vessel is not making the application in person. Our lawyers in Hong Kong can help you draw up a power of attorney or represent you in front of the relevant authorities.
If you wish to purchase a vessel after you move, our team can first assist you with obtaining residency in Hong Kong.

Operating licence for boats in Hong Kong

The Certificate of Ownership and the Operating Licence are required for any vessel before it operates in the coastal waters of Hong Kong. The licensing period is 1 month minimum and 12 months maximum. Vessels that carry more than 60 passengers or have more than 150 gross tonnage must receive an Approval-in-Principle Letter from the Director of the Marine.
The certificates for operation are issued according to the vessel’s length, engine type (diesel, petrol, etc.) and engine power. The vessel must also have a third party insurance of at least 1,000,000 HK$.
If you need help obtaining the licence for your vessel in Hong Kong our lawyers can offer you personalized assistance. Please contact our law firm in HK if you want to know more about the maritime law in Hong Kong.
Our team can also help you with other types of registrations, such as trademark registration in Hong Kong.