OSASA says new digital platform will resolve administrative bottlenecks

OSASA is setting up a digital platform to pre-register all yachts entering South African waters, as per new requirements introduced by the Department of Transport.

Registration is now a legal requirement for all foreign and local boats, a move expected to resolve the recent administrative stalemate experienced by some incoming cruisers, particularly in the early days of the Coronavirus lockdown.

However OSASA says the website registration platform will have additional benefits for the local industry, such as a detailed list of available marine services.

“The foreign boats will all be looking for where to get repairs and maintenance done as South Africa represents their best opportunities between Malaysia and the Caribbean/Europe,” explained OSASA co-director John Franklin. “Our website will be a prime source of information for these vessels, particularly the foreign visitors. We have established that the average spend in South Africa of these boats is about R300,00 per boat and of this approximately 50% is spent on marine trades. We are expecting 150 visiting boats this year, mainly in the window October to January. That’s over R20 million on marine trades!” Franklin said.

The website would also be a payment portal for the registration process, allowing boat owners to clear some of the administrative burden online rather than with the Department itself.

OSASA is offering SABBEX members to register for a free listing of their services on the site, with a view to building up the database. “We would like to set up a listing initially with trades offered and contact details and then later offer a facility for companies to attach an advertisement on a paid basis,” Franklin said.

Listing categories would include the following categories, with more likely to be added as the database takes shape:

  • Yards offering haul-out facilities
  • GRP repairs
  • Woodworking, cabinetry,
  • Mechanical services, engines, generators, fridges, water-makers
  • Stainless steel fabrications
  • Electrical services, solar
  • Electronics and instrumentation
  • Rigging and riggers
  • Sailmaker, sail and canvas repairs

Companies seeking more requirement should contact Franklin at john@osasa.org.za 

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