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Source: BUS Sachsen-Anhalt (Linie6PLus)

Apply for authorisation to guard seagoing vessels


You must apply for approval from the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (BAFA) whenever you want to offer armed services with the aim of anti-piracy on seagoing ships under the German flag or if your company is based in Germany.

Before granting approval, the BAFA checks together with the Federal Police whether your company meets the approval criteria. They must then ensure themselves that the guards deployed meet the requirements placed on them in terms of reliability, suitability and expertise.

You can apply for permission to guard seagoing vessels at the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control.

  • the form is available online
  • then print out the application form and upload it with the signature of the person responsible via the upload form
  • please attach the necessary application documents in pdf format to the application form
  • You can speed up the processing of your application by uploading the completed self-assessment form in pdf format
  • the BAFA and the Federal Police examine the operational organisation and procedures in the company, the equipment, the requirements for the executive employee appointed as the person responsible, the public liability insurance
  • if necessary, the BAFA requests documents for

the BAFA will then inform you in writing whether your application has been granted.

Your security company must meet certain requirements for it to be approved. The following are tested:

  • the operational organisation and procedures,
  • the equipment,
  • the professional and personal suitability and reliability of the persons employed and the management as well as
  • public liability insurance.
  • Documentation of the operational organization
  • Process manual for the procedures
  • Service Instructions
  • List of equipment used by the security company
  • Documents proving the reliability, suitability and expertise of the person responsible in the company, including the certificate of good conduct or an equivalent foreign document in german or, if applicable, in certified translation
  • Proof of liability insurance
  • Company profile with a description of the market position of the security company in the field of maritime security
  • Extract from the commercial register or a comparable foreign document
  • Where applicable, export, import or transit permits for weapons and equipment subject to authorisation

With the exception of the certificate of good conduct, all documents can also be submitted in English. However, the Federal Office reserves the right to request translations for individual documents.

  • Initial application: EUR 10,297 – 19,400
  • Fee for follow-up application: EUR 2,949 – 10,632
  • Fee for the recognition of a foreign admission: EUR 2,949 – 17,960
  • You should submit the application about 6 months before the planned start of a guarding activity.
  • Validity of admission: 2 years

about 3 to 6 months, depending on the completeness of the application documents

  • Online procedure possible: yes
  • Written form required: yes
  • Personal appearance required: no

In addition to the approval, you need a weapons permit in accordance with § 28a of the Weapons Act for the armed guarding of seagoing ships under the German flag. This is issued by the Ministry of the Interior and Sport – Weapons Authority – of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg.

If your security company is established in Germany and you want to carry out guarding tasks with weapons on seagoing ships flying other flags, a weapons permit from your local weapons authority may be required.

If you would like to export weapons and equipment subject to authorisation from Germany for the exercise of guarding activities, you must apply for an export licence from the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control.

Please note the information and further links on the website of the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control.

The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy

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