Published: Feb 10, 2019

New Commercial Maritime Regulation in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

The long awaited Commercial Maritime Regulation (the “Maritime Regulations”) for Saudi Arabia has been issued. The Maritime Regulations have been published pursuant to Royal Decree number M/33, dated 5/4/1440, which is the first maritime legislation of its kind for the country. Building on positive, ongoing legal developments in the Kingdom, as anticipated the new regulations cover almost all aspects of maritime work including:

  • Ships – nationality, registration, ownership, bareboat chartered ships registration, offshore platforms licensing, classification societies accreditation, shipbuilding contracts and ownership of new built ships, ship repairs;
  • Creation, termination and transfer of ownership rights;
  • Priority debts/maritime liens and their extinguish/time limitation;
  • Maritime mortgage and its registration;
  • Ship arrest against maritime debts and her release against a guarantee;
  • Judicial execution ship arrest and sale;
  • Shipowners and managers liability and their limitation;
  • Ship master authorities and obligations;
  • Shipping agent and freight forwarder rights and obligations;
  • Maritime employment contract;
  • Charterparties;
  • Carriage of goods by sea contracts under bills of lading. Place of filing claims and arbitration agreements under the bills of lading;
  • Transport of passengers by sea contracts;
  • Collisions;
  • Salvage;
  • Marine loss and general average;
  • Marine Insurance contracts – on vessels and cargo liability;
  • Marine pollution;
  • Navigation safety in ports and territorial waters. Towage and pilotage; and
  • Punishments and penalties.

For a country that is one of the region’s key economic drivers with more than 10 major ports, it goes without saying that these new Maritime Regulations will pave the way for a new era for the shipping, oil & gas and logistics industries in the Middle East.

How will it actually be implemented? Our team of experts are keeping a close eye on the legal developments and we will update you soon!


Key Contacts:

Siri Hashem
Senior Associate, Transport & Insurance

Omar Omar
Partner, Head of Transport & Insurance