The Offer of the Port System in FITUR: Ports that are safe, sustainable, connected and at the service of society.
Puertos del Estado ready to resume cruise traffic with full safety guarantees
- Francisco Toledo: We hope to be able to resume international cruise activity in June, subject to authorisation from the Ministry of Health.
19-05-2021 (Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda). The port system of general interest of the State, comprised of 46 ports managed by 28 Port Authorities and coordinated by Puertos del Estado, has been presented at the International Tourism Trade Fair (FITUR, Feria Internacional de Turismo) with a complete offer for those people who want to visit our country through facilities for cruises and marinas for nautical sports-recreation, in the heart of the cities.
According to Francisco Toledo, president of Puertos del Estado, "the ports are ready to receive cruise ships and pleasure boats with all the health, safety and security measures established by the Ministries of Health and Transport. We hope to be able to resume international cruise activity in June, with the necessary authorisation from the Ministry of Health, as already the case for domestic cruises.
Among the projects on which Puertos del Estado is working, Toledo has announced the development of an application for passengers to generate a QR code on their mobile phones, which will make passenger arrivals at ports easier and safer. In addition, the reinforcement of medical and nursing staff for passenger control at ports of arrival is already underway, in coordination with Foreign Health.
Out of the world's top 50 cruise lines, only eight are operating relatively normally during May, 17 will operate during June, and the remaining 25 have postponed their operations until July and August. Some of our neighbouring countries, such as Italy and Portugal, have already restarted their cruise activity, and others, such as France, have announced that they will do so at the end of June or the first days of July this year.
Cruises and recreational boating have become alternative formulas to traditional tourism. Thus, nearly 11 million people chose to visit and get to know our country onboard 4,236 cruise ships in 2019. These figures have made Spain the second country in the EU in terms of cruise passengers, behind Italy, and ports such as Barcelona and the Balearic Islands, with 3.1 and 2.6 million passengers, respectively, a world benchmark.
With regard to recreational boating, nearly 30,000 moorings, 1/3 of all existing moorings in Spain, are located at the facilities of one of the 28 Spanish Port Authorities. In addition, the ports of general interest concentrate half of the 27 facilities of the sector dedicated to so-called mega-yachts; large pleasure boats. This sector has become very important for Spanish tourism as it contributes approximately 0.7% of the national GDP, as well as more than 110,000 jobs according to data provided by the National Association of Nautical Companies.