Instead of clamping down on the construction of more marinas and the installation of more moorings in the Balearics, the local government should be creating mooring space for the new mega-yachts coming on to the market and heading for Balearic waters. Yesterday the first shipment of yachts arrived in Palma on board the Dock Express super carrier as the Balearics starts to get ready for the start of the charter and sailing season. In the build up to the season, Dockwise Yacht Transport will be bringing four shipments of yachts of all sizes from all over the world, into Palma, one more than last season. Adam Taunton said yesterday that the industry is extremely busy, in Majorca it has been all winter with refits and repairs and this summer is looking to be busier than last season. “The recessions are starting to wane, for some it has not been a great winter post September 11 and now they are all coming out to play,” Taunton said. He did add that the bulk of the super yachts will be heading to Palma slightly later than usual. September 11 slowed the winter season in the Caribbean down and there were a lot of later charters, hence they are returning to the Mediterranean a bit later. Despite the uncertain winter and the Balearic marina freeze, the local nautical industry, which is worth millions of pounds every year to the local economy, is in a positive frame of mind. However, Taunton said that a marina and mooring moratorium is one thing but “as the government has never thought about boats larger than 60 metres,” the authorities need to be considering that there are some 200, 200 foot-plus mega-yachts currently under construction, many of which once they are in the water, will want to come to the Balearics, but mooring space is extremely limited. “These sorts of mega-yachts are the very top end of the market, carrying 15 to 20 wealthy passengers who will be looking to spend a while in the Balearics, hiring cars, booking flights, playing golf, wining and dining, shopping etc, but there's hardly any room for them,” he said yesterday. “They will need somewhere to go and if there are not sufficient facilities in the Balearics, they'll obviously go elsewhere.”

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