The arrival of CMA CGM Vivaldi into service means that CMA CGM (UK)
Limited has met its initial commitment to enter 11 ships into the UK's Tonnage Tax regime, but there could be more to come.
Comments David Halliday, executive chairman CMA CGM (UK) Limited:
"Given the extent of CMA CGM's newbuilding programme, there is every
possibility that we would seek to expand our presence in the UK
Tonnage Tax regime and add vessels to our initial commitment. But
that would be conditional on the UK Tonnage Tax remaining an
attractive proposition and continuing to offer both financial and
All 11 vessels of the original complement are owned by the CMA CGM's
UK subsidiary and managed by the technical department in the UK.
As a result of entering the UK Tonnage Tax regime, CMA CGM (UK)
Limited has made a commitment to train UK nationals as cadets.
Initially, the company recruited seven cadets into a three-year
training programme with courses onshore and onboard CMA CGM vessels.
Adds Mr Halliday "With our initial complement of ships now in the
regime, we will be looking to increase the number of cadets that we
recruit this year. Successful candidates can expect to become a ship
's Captain or Chief Engineer by their late 20s and have
responsibility for ships and cargoes worth millions of dollars."
The United Kingdom introduced
a tonnage tax regime from 1st January
2000 for qualifying shipping companies to stimulate investment in UK
shipping. Under Tonnage Tax, the tax liability is calculated with
reference to a pre-set scale of alternate income based on the
tonnage of the ships in the relevant fleet, rather than actual
income earned. Therefore, under Tonnage Tax, tax expense varies with
the tonnage of the fleet rather than with the profitability of the
In particular, it is generally not permitted for a company within
Tonnage Tax to reduce its liability to Tonnage Tax by offsetting
losses or depreciation. Entry to Tonnage Tax requires an election by
the relevant shipping company. Such an election generally must be
made for a ten-year period and, once made, is irrevocable.
CMA CGM (UK) Limited entered the Tonnage Tax regime in July 2004.
Adds David Halliday
: "Fulfilling our initial commitment under the UK
Tonnage Tax Regime comes at an exciting time for the CMA CGM Group.
"CMA CGM Vivaldi is one of 21 owned vessels, with a combined
capacity of 130,000 teu that CMA CGM will take delivery of between
2004 and 2007, enabling us to continue with the upgrade of existing
services and launch of new ones.
"In the UK, the CMA CGM Group is becoming an increasingly
significant player with a developing maturity. All told, we've now
got over 270 staff at eight offices across the United Kingdom."