Government to introduce new boat registration fees March 1; stakeholders await the details

Government to introduce new boat registration fees March 1; stakeholders await the details

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — The government yesterday announced that it intends to implement new reduced boat registration fees with effect from March 1, with the head of the National Fisheries Association noting that stakeholders would have to wait and see the extent of those fee reductions.

The Ministry of Energy and Transport said in a statement that following the implementation of the new reduced fees, the Ministry of Finance will provide guidance on an exercise to ensure that boaters who registered prior to the reduction also receive the benefit.  The owners of vessels registered under the Water Ski and Motorboat Control Act and the Boat Registration Act are reminded that the registration process must be completed by 31st March 2024. 

“The Davis administration is committed to addressing the concerns raised by boaters and will give priority to supporting the blue economy and commercial fishermen throughout The Bahamas,” the statement noted.

The tenfold and more significant increases in boat registration fees, as outlined in the fee schedule introduced with the 2023-2024 Budget, have triggered anxiety and protests within the maritime industry.

Keith Carroll, the National Fisheries Association’s (NFA) president, told Eyewitness News: “We saw what they put out, but it’s still going to be a surprise because we still don’t know what the new fees are going to be.”