Connect with us


Video Report: Superyacht charter licence floated by Marine Dept

Legacy Phuket Gazette



Video Report: Superyacht charter licence floated by Marine Dept | Thaiger

PHUKET: Standardized criteria for foreign-flagged superyacht chartering licences, which are designed to move Phuket and Thailand toward the goal of becoming the regional maritime hub, will be finalized by the end of the month, it was announced last week.

The current issuance of such licences is subjective and dealt with case by case, explained Marine Department Director-General Chula Sukmanop.

“We are looking to issue one-year temporary licences to vessels that are 30 meters or longer. We expect them to be crewed by about 12 or more people,” Mr Chula explained.

“There are many superyacht owners who would bring their superyachts to Phuket if they could charter them while here, and I know many people who charter superyachts around the world for in excess of US$100,000 [about 3.4 million baht] per week,” said Gulu Lalvani, chairman of Royal Phuket Marina.

“Introducing a charter licence for superyachts whose owners wish to charter in Thailand will significantly increase charter revenue for the country.”

With its world-class cruising grounds, Thailand is the destination of choice for superyachts coming to Asia, and amendments to the current rules and regulations are expected to encourage growth in superyacht arrivals and potential charter income, Mr Lalvani noted.

To illustrate the economic advantages that the superyacht industry could bring to Phuket and Thailand, Nick Wyatt, marina manager for Yacht Haven Marina (YHM), broke down the numbers for January 2014.

At YHM there were 14 vessels between 30m and 40m with an average value of about 1.3 billion baht; seven vessels between 40m and 50m with an average value of 1.7bn baht; and 10 vessels between 50m and 60m with an average value of 2bn baht. Given that the industry standard for calculating a vessel’s operation costs is 10 per cent of its value per year, vessels at YHM generated more than 49mn baht with an average of 31 superyachts a month.

“This excludes crew spending – which will see funds go to restaurants, bars, car hire providers, massage parlors and many other businesses – as well as funds used for major projects,” Mr Wyatt pointed out.

“The proof that catering to the industry has a positive economic impact is easy to see. Consider the amount of development in the marine industry, as a whole, which is only about 16-years-old in Thailand. We went from zero to four major marinas in Phuket – all relatively busy with a cumulative dockage of about 900 berths. Additionally, there are boats on the hardstands and others anchored around the island,” Mr Wyatt said.

A presentation given to the marine department in 2011 by Zara Tremlett, also a marina manager for Yacht Haven, outlined many of the “Multiplier benefits” beyond direct cash to the economy.

“A Thai workforce trained to international yachting industry standards, therefore offering new employment opportunities with a high level of added value; local contractors benefiting from working at the high end of the business with top-quality products, becoming recognized and recommended by the superyacht industry for other major superyacht refit projects; the opportunity to develop and offer ultra high-end products and services to meet the expectations of superyacht clientele and guests, helping to position Phuket in the high-end tourism destination segment; and foreign direct investment and business joint-venture opportunities from superyacht owners – almost all high-end businessmen – and guests in Phuket and Thailand,” the report explained.

Chris Gordon, founder of Sunsail yacht charter and managing director of The Village on Coconut Island, took a slightly different slant in the meeting, asking that the Marine Department look at widening the remit of the temporary charter yacht licence.

“The real benefit to Phuket and Thailand in general is the crewed yachts, which tend to run at a slightly smaller size, somewhere around 60 feet up to about 100 feet. At that size you need to employ people to look after them and they brings in quality tourists. That doesn’t mean we don’t want the superyachts, and the big, big ones, they’re fine, but they come and they go,” Mr Gordon said.

“The owners of these smaller cruising yachts will base their boat in an area and keep them there. This, of course, will bring real money to the local economy in a number of ways, from hiring local staff to general maintenance.”

Mr Gordon emphasized the fact that the support for the larger yachts was welcome. However, he pointed out that many of the owners of boats between 60 and 100 feet were ‘reasonably rich’ and looking to offset their operation costs, as opposed to the mega-wealthy superyacht owners.

However, Mr Chula said that the government had good reason restricting the temporary license to yachts of 30m and over.

“We have picked 30 meters as the marker for superyachts because we don’t have many yachts of that size currently in Thailand, and we don’t want to interfere in Thai charter businesses that are already established and operating here,” Mr Chula said.

— Chutharat Plerin


Want more from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates

Leave a comment below or join the discussion on Thaiger Talk Forums.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Phuket. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Tourism12 hours ago

Pattaya October reopening hampered by obstacles

Coronavirus (Covid-19)12 hours ago

Thong Lor again: 31 arrested in club violating Covid-19 rules

Coronavirus (Covid-19)13 hours ago

Pfizer vaccine application received, review process begun

Phuket Sandbox July 1st


Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in July - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages in June!

Sponsored by image

Visa16 hours ago

Covid-19 prevention leads to 14 arrests of longterm overstays

Coronavirus (Covid-19)17 hours ago

Covid UPDATE: 3,277 new infections and 29 deaths, provincial totals

Thailand17 hours ago

Red tape and restrictions suggest a slow Phuket reopening

Phuket17 hours ago

UPDATE: Tourism Minister reportedly says July 1 ‘sandbox’ won’t happen

Tourism18 hours ago

Koh Samui eyes August 1 reopening, “Samui Sealed Route”

Weather19 hours ago

Village need rain? Have you considered a giant penis?

Coronavirus (Covid-19)23 hours ago

Covid UPDATE Saturday: 3,277 new infections and 29 deaths

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

8.3% of Thailand’s 50 million vaccine target reached so far

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Site launched for June 14 vaccine signup for all foreigners

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Free quarantine accommodation for arriving Thais to be cancelled

Thailand2 days ago

Thailand News Today | Sandbox – bar, clubs closed? Local AZ problems, Sex toy arrest | June 11

Drugs2 days ago

UN report: Changes in Southeast Asia drug trafficking during the pandemic

Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism3 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism4 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8