A shareholding company called Qatar Petroleum Company Limited for the Sale of Petroleum Products shall be established for the marketing and sale, outside the country, of products under government jurisdiction, according to a decree issued by HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani on Tuesday.
HH the Emir also issued Law No 8 for 2016 regarding marine vessels.
Article No 1 of Law No 9 of 2016 stipulates that the company will be completely owned by the State of Qatar and represented by Qatar Petroleum. The new law amended some provisions of Decree Law No 15 of 2007 on the regulation of the marketing and sale, outside Qatar, of products under the jurisdiction of government regulation.
Article No 1 further says that the company shall operate as a commercial enterprise that has the right to own the products subject to government regulations and trade in them inside Qatar and sell such products in its name.
The company shall appoint Qatar Petroleum as the agent for it to undertake the process of marketing and selling these products. The law is effective from the next day of its date of publication in the official gazette.
Meanwhile, Law No 8 for 2016 regulates the registration, operation and technical requirements for vessels used for marine navigation or sports or prepared for such purposes, with a carrying capacity of less than 200 tonnes, and not used for generating profit.
The law stipulates that all marine vessels can be operated only after registration and it is not allowed to pilot them without a valid driving licence. However, vessels belonging to the government are exempted from this. Besides, HE the Minister of Transport and Communication can issue a decision to exempt scientific research ships from these regulations.
All those purposely involved in operating or navigating such vessels without valid registration will be penalised with a maximum jail sentence of three months and a fine of up to QR50,000, or either. The same applies to driving them without a valid licence.
However, HE the Minister or a delegated officer may work out a reconciliation before submitting a criminal case or while it is being reviewed by a court, on the condition that the violator pays half of the stipulated maximum fine.
Accordingly, the criminal case will be dropped.
Current owners of relevant marine vessels will be given a grace period of six months from the day of enforcing the law to comply with the regulations. HE the Minister may extend this for a similar period (or periods).
To register a marine vessel, it should be equipped with the necessary navigation and communication apparatus in addition to lights, SOS signals and other tools necessary to observe safety and security conditions, which will be issued by a decision from HE the Minister.
The vessel should also pass the relevant technical inspection for registration and the owner shall submit a third-party insurance document from a national insurance company. If the owner is not a Qatari national, his/her Qatar residency permit should be valid. HE the Minister may add more conditions or waive some of these temporarily or permanently.
Each registered vessel will be issued a plate that distinguishes it from others that carry the name and number of registration. It is not allowed to operate a vessel without such a plate and it cannot be modified without the prior approval of the department concerned.
The registration will be valid for one year, which will be renewed only after compliance with set technical requirements and payment of fees.
The registration certificate should always be kept on board the vessel and presented on demand to officers concerned. In addition, it is not permissible for any person to drive a marine vessel without obtaining the proper valid licence. Also, the owner or renter will not allow a person who is below 18 years of age to drive it, or any person without a valid driving licence.
The law stipulates that prior approval of the authority concerned should be obtained to operate or establish a school or training centre to teach how to drive marine vessels.