Posted on October 08, 2019 by Ilias Kiritsis
Ever since their inception back in the 1920s, Flags of Convenience (FoC) have been a subject of no small amount of controversy. The practice originally began during prohibition, when American cruise ships would fly under the Panamanian flag in order to be able to serve alcohol to passengers and thus escape the stringent US regulations at the time.
Nowadays, the ability to change your ship’s register while avoiding nationality and/or residency requirements still remains as contentious as ever.
Currently, more than half of the world’s maritime fleet operates under an open registry (approximately 55%, according to the latest data). A report written back in 2009 shows that over 40% of the world’s merchant fleet is currently registered with Panama, Liberia and the Marshall Islands.