The Malta Maritime Forum is pleased to note that the Civil Court (Commercial Section) is being bolstered in line with recommendations it had made in the public domain last March.

In fact, the Forum understands that a judge who is at present hearing lawsuits within the Civil Court (Commercial Section) has also been assigned cases dealing with maritime matters including, those falling within the parameters of the Merchant Shipping Act, the maritime sections of the Commercial Code and actions relating to claims in contract and in tort – damages related to the maritime sector. In the opinion of the Forum, this development is of vital importance to the maritime industry as it signifies that there is a public recognition that the industry requires specialised attention and therefore timely, effective and efficient justice.

The next crucial step forward is for these cases to be assigned by operation of the law to the Civil Court (Commercial Section) not simply as matter of assignment. The Malta Maritime Forum is completely in favour of amendments to current legislation that address the issue. The legal changes will serve to strengthen the present administrative structure and send the right message to the international maritime community and international trade.

Author: MMF