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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Federal Ship Financing Program (Title XI)

The Federal Ship Financing Program (commonly referred to as "Title XI" based on the part of the Merchant Marine Act of 1936 that established the program) provides for a full faith and credit guarantee by the United States Government to promote the growth and modernization of the U.S. merchant marine and U.S. shipyards. Through long-term debt repayment guarantees, the Program encourages U.S. shipowners to obtain new vessels from U. S. shipyards cost effectively. It also assists U.S. shipyards with modernizing their facilities for building and repairing vessels. The repayment term allowed under the program generally is much longer, and the interest rates are lower, than those available from the commercial lending market because of the obligations guaranteed by the U.S. Government.

Vessels of National Interest

MARAD is authorized by 46 USC 53703(d) to prioritize processing the applications for certain vessels that have been determined to be of importance for the support of US shipyards and the US Merchant Marine. As of June 21, 2022, and after consultation with other Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, MARAD designates the following as Vessels of National Interest:

Vessels that are constructed or reconstructed to be used for use primarily in:

  • construction,
  • service,
  • and/or maintenance of offshore wind facilities.

Applications for Vessels of National Interest have priority for review and funding over applications for all other vessels except those considered suitable for service as a naval auxiliary vessel.

The above designation list is subject to review and update every four years and from time to time on an as-needed basis.

For additional information on whether a project would qualify or questions about processing applications with the Title XI program, please contact or 202.366.5737.

Last updated: Thursday, June 23, 2022