The volume of goods rose six per cent last year and will continue to rise this year. | Archive

Between January and November last year there was an increase of over six per cent in the volume of goods shipped to Balearic state ports. The figure rose to 15.5 million tonnes, and the increase is forecast to continue this year. An estimate of at least 17 million tonnes is being given for the whole of 2018.

In percentage terms, the greatest increase (20%) last year was at Alcudia. The total was 2.13 million tonnes, but this amount was some 40% lower than at Ibiza, while Palma accounted for 9.4 million tonnes, an increase of five per cent.

The rises are easy to explain. Tourism demand is one reason. A general improvement in economic conditions is another. Demand is therefore coming from various sectors, such as retailing, hospitality and construction, with a need for more fuel also adding to the tonnage.

Bartolomé Servera, the president of the distributors association, points to greater tourism activity in the first couple of months of the year as another factor. Orders by distribution companies have been brought forward; they wouldn't typically be made until the middle of this month. Over the past fortnight the arrival of goods has been much higher than last year. "Warehouses are stocked in anticipation of hotels opening, especially in Majorca. Certain tourism products, such as cycling, are going very well. As a consequence, business performance is better than in 2017."

The only port which last year didn't register an increase between January and November was Mahon. The volume was down eight per cent to a third of that registered by Alcudia (629,000 tonnes). At the other state port, La Savina, there was a ten per cent increase to 305,000 tonnes.