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Fiji Cuts Down On Yachts

By doina — last modified Jan 03, 2008 05:06 PM

Published: 2008-01-03 17:06:23
Countries: Fiji

The length of time cruising yachts are permitted to stay in Fiji is to be drastically shortened, following the announcement of the 2008 Fiji Budget.

The Budget, announced in November 2007, includes changes to the Customs Tariff Act, which will reduce the permitted stays of cruising vessels from the current 12 months to three months only. A 3 month extension may be possible "at the discretion of the Minister".

This is a real blow to Fiji-loving yachties, as the current rules allow for a 12 month stay plus a six months extension. It is not clear when the new rules will come into effect and the implications for Fiji's fledgling yacht services industry remain unclear, but leaving your boat in a secure Fiji hurricane hole such as Savusavu or Vuda Point Marina over the off-season may no longer be possible.

The development comes on the back of new regulations as of July 2007 that yachts must notify Fiji customs 48 hours before arrival or risk a heavy fine or imprisonment.