Prosperous business

Pilotage obligations and tariffs


“Skilled and capable captains should, whenever possible, receive a Pilot Exemption Certificate so that they can enter a port without a pilot.”

Priority KVNR: revision of piloting regulations must result in straightforward guidelines 

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Lodewijk Wisse
Tax and Legal

+31 10 2176 270

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Press inquiries


Nathan Habers
Public Relations

+31 10 2176 264


In 2012, the KVNR agreed to a new national pilot fee structure, on condition that small seagoing vessels be exempt. Furthermore, with the introduction of the new structure on 1 January 2014, so-called ‘cross-financing’ of pilot fees was largely abolished. This meant that almost every port covered their costs with their pilotage services.

A proposed revision of the pilotage regulations – called New Style Pilotage – would replace the use of permits and exemptions with Pilot Exemption Certificates (PECs).

Contrary to the current system, where only the type of vessel is looked at, New Style Pilotage would take the skills of the captain into account. What’s more, the current system operates regionally, while the new system would work on the national level.

Therefore, depending on the type of ship for which he has obtained certification, a captain holding a PEC can enter a port without a pilot.

The challenge

The KVNR believes that safety and efficiency are the backbone of New Style Pilotage, and that existing regulation must be simplified.

The current freedom of regional interpretation only makes the issue more complicated for shipowners. Switching to a national system would bring clarity and uniformity.

Pilotage rates are set annually. In order to maintain an international level playing field, both within the sector and between transport modalities, only moderate increases of pilot rates are desirable.