THE new yachting legislation that came into Spain in 2014 is working, according to Palmabased Network Marine Consultants.
It has been over a year since all charter yachts operating in Spain – irrespective of size – could claim exemption from the infamous matriculation tax, and several months since non-EU flagged superyachts were allowed to charter within Balearic waters.
“2014 was a year to remember, giant steps were taken and the brakes came off Spain’s yachting sector,” said Patricia Bullock, director of Network Marine Consultants.
“We are now open for fair and commercially- viable business and the industry has started to flourish.
Right now at Network Marine Consultants we are busier than ever with plenty of boats going through the process of obtaining their first licence for charter.
From a base of zero in 2013, Network Marine Consultants administered no less than 33 superyacht charter licences in 2014.
Removing renewals from the equation, these brand new licences were for 25 motor yachts, four sailing yachts and four catamarans.
“It’s these superyacht statistics that prove that the new legislation is working and gives us hope that the Spanish superyacht charter fleet will continue to expand,” said Ms Bullock.
“Worldwide yachting association, MYBA, estimated back in 2011 that there were around 802 large yachts for rent in the Mediterranean, of which only 17 were available in Spain.
Taking only our endeavours into account, we’ve already managed to increase this figure by 200 per cent, bringing clients with high purchasing power to the islands.
Official figures from Spanish marine trade association, ANEN, show that Spain’s recreational yachting market grew almost 10 per cent after six years of decline in 2014.
The Balearics still dominate Spain’s recreational yachting market, taking nearly 15 per cent of boat registrations in 2014, nudging Barcelona into second place with just under 11 per cent.