STAFF REPORTER
FIGURES emerging from the International Boat Show in Barcelona yesterday showed that the Balearic Islands has been the region of Spain with the third highest number of boat sales from January to September this year.

Sales in the Islands constituted 11 percent of the national total, beaten into third place only by Catalonia which claimed 21.5 percent of national sales and by Andalucia (18%).

However, there were some telling comparisons to be made with 2009. The number of boats sold in Spain between January and September last year totalled 5'415 while the figure for the same period in 2010 has tailed off at 5'081. Smaller vessels, of less than 8 metres in length continue to be those most in demand - accounting for 86 percent of all boats sold.

There were nevertheless signs of recovery in the 8 to 12 metre length market - year-on-year growth of 1.9 percent was registered during the first three months of 2010.

The Barcelona Boat Show which started yesterday, runs until 14th November. There are 354 Spanish and foreign exhibitors, 7 percent less than last year. Some 35'000 square metres of exhibition area is expected to host 120'000 visitors. Deutsche Bank is offering immediate financing for boats and moorings.

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