Individual vehicle registration

This LAP analyses the procedure to be followed for individual vehicle registration. It contains information on the relevant authority, the documentary requirements for registration, as well as the time and costs associated with the procedure.


In general, ships and seagoing vessels are required to have an identification number recognized by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and a registration identifying ownership, other liable parties, and shipbuilder. IMO numbers became mandatory through SOLAS regulation XI/3 of 1994, to improve maritime safety and security and to reduce maritime fraud. The regulation applies to cargo vessels that are at least 300 gross tons (gt) and passenger vessels of at least 100 gt. Registration in international or national ship registers are mandatory also for smaller ships/boats. Beside IMO requirements, a «Declaration of safety» issued by one of the approved classification societies and a set of Qualification requirements is commonly required.

Pan-European Assessment:

Despite the lack of specific regulation to this effect, or of significant practical experiences, early research suggests that no distinction would exist between hydrogen fuel cell vessels and other vessels with conventional power terms of vehicle registration procedure.
While some waiting time as well as economic costs are involved, these are considered relatively small and would not be a result of the hydrogen and full cell character of the vessel (once type approved). As a result, individual vehicle registration is not considered a barrier.
Is it a barrier?
Assessment Severity


EU Legislation:

  • SOLAS regulation XI/3 adopted in 1994 and which came into force on 1 January 1996
    Chapter I, on surveying the various types of ships and certifying that they meet the requirements of the convention. Chapter V – Safety of navigation, requires that all vessels are sufficiently and efficiently manned from a safety point of view, including requirements concerning all potential dangers to navigation, the competence of the crew, and all other relevant factors. Chapter IX – Management for the Safe Operation of Ships requires every shipowner and any person or company that has assumed responsibility for a ship to comply with the International Safety Management Code (ISM)..
  • IMO Resolutjon A.890(21) «principles of safe manning»
    consists of Guidelines for the application of principles of safe manning; Guidelines for determination of minimum safe manning; Responsibilities in the application of principles of minimum safe manning, Guidance on contents and model form of minimum safe manning document and Framework for determining minimum safe manning.;
  • United Nations Convention on Conditions for Registration of Ships
    The Convention has the stated purpose of ensuring or, as the case may be, strengthening the genuine link between a State and ships flying its flag, and in order to exercise effectively its jurisdiction and control over such ships with regard to identification and accountability of shipowners and operators..