Fabian Demicoli

MCCAA: Revision of the Recreational Crafts Directive


Commission Proposal COM(2011) 456 was published in the Official Journal of the EU on the 26th July 2011. This proposal will revise and repeal the current Directive governing the placing on the market of recreational crafts, personal watercrafts and their engines. The proposal first needs to be discussed at European Parliament and Council of Ministers level before being formally adopted as a new Directive. Once adopted, further transitional periods would be expected. 


The purpose of this consultation is to obtain feedback from stakeholders in order to draft Malta's position for discussions at Council level. Following adoption of the proposal, amendments to the provisions will not be permitted.

Key points proposed for revision

The main changes being proposed at this stage are:

Stricter exhaust emission limits for engines, in view of health benefits to users, preservation of the marine environment and also improve the air quality in areas where crafts are concentrated (such as holiday resorts). Importers are strongly advised to contact their respective suppliers and manufacturers to ensure that they can provide them with products (in particular 2-stroke engines) that are compliant to these new provisions;

Alignment of exhaust and noise emission requirements with those in the USA, thus allowing manufacturers to save costs and become more competitive by being able to serve the world market with a single production line;

New constructional safety requirements to reflect newer technologies;

Clarification of obligations of economic operators, rules for affixing of the CE-marking and obligations on Member States with respect to market surveillance.

Who will be affected?

Competent Authorities, Manufacturers, Authorised Representatives, Notified Bodies, Importers, Distributors and Users of watercrafts.

What products will be affected?

The following products fall under the scope of the regulations:

Recreational Crafts – any boat of any type intended for sports and leisure purposes of hull length from 2.5m to 24m, regardless of the means of propulsion;

Personal Watercraft (PWC) – a watercraft intended for sports and leisure purposes of less than 4m in length which uses an internal combustion engine having a water jet pump as its primary source of propulsion and designed to be operated by a person or persons sitting, standing or kneeling on, rather than within the confines of, a hull;

Propulsion Engine – any spark or compression ignition, internal combustion engine used for propulsion purposes;

Partly completed recreational crafts;

Components of watercrafts – Ignition-protected equipment for inboard and stern drive petrol engines and petrol tank spaces; Start-in-gear protection devices for outboard engines; Steering wheels, steering mechanisms and cable assemblies; Fuel tanks intended for fixed installations and fuel hoses; Prefabricated hatches and port lights.

Deadline for feedback

Feed back to arrive at our offices by Friday 14th October 2011.

Contact details

Feedback or requests for clarifications are to be addressed to:

Technical Regulations Division,


Second Floor, Evans Building, Merchants Street,

Valletta, VLT 1179,


Emails: ;



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