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Japanese 'first' for Marshall Islands Registry

Japanese 'first' for Marshall Islands Registry

Tokyo: Mitsui OSK Line (MOL) has become the first major shipowner in Japan to register a vessel with the Marshall Islands Maritime Registry, a move the flag hopes will mark 'the beginning of a new era' for it in Asia's largest maritime market.
Vessel in question is the Opal Express, a 28,850gt product tanker newbuilding from the Iwagi Zosen shipyard in Japan.
'We are very pleased that MOL decided on the Marshall Islands Maritime Registry and we view the new vessel registration as an endorsement of our service-focused strategy for the ship owning community in Japan and around the world,' said Bill Gallagher, president of International Registries, Inc (IRI), maritime and corporate administrator of the Marshall Islands flag.
 'Capt Yasushi Higuma, Marshall Islands deputy commissioner of maritime affairs in Japan, is leading the drive to expand our presence in the maritime community and this vessel joining the Registry is indicative of the growing demand for our efficient and reliable services in this market,' said Ms Annie Ng, managing director of International Registries (FE) Ltd. (IRFE).
IRFE opened a new office in the Nishi-Shinbashi district of Tokyo one year ago, offering full vessel registration and related services, thereby offering Japanese owners reduced costs over overseas transactions.

The Marshall Islands currently ranks as the fifth largest registry in the world with 1,250 vessels and 33.5m gt of shipping.  [12/07/06]

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