“The face of yachting is changing” says Lars Loftus, head of Palma's International Yachtmaster Training (IYT) centre. Majorca is a mecca for both yacht owners and crews; the ever increasing industry keeps many of the island's businesses afloat and the marinas are constantly full with luxury craft - either visiting, wintering or repairing. Captains, crews and the yachts themselves have for many years been watched over by the marine saftey authority the MCA - who ensure that all procedures on board are carried out according to offical safety rules. These rules are set to change from February 2002, leaving many without the necessary qualifications to continue in their lucrative careers. That's where IYT come in to the equation. They have been setting up their course structures, simulators and computer systems all summer - as well as conducting courses - to try and ensure that all “yachties” are qualified enough to continue their jobs. Soon it will not matter if you have 20 years experience at sea, you will not be permitted to work without the right papers.

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