The three cruise ships in Palma at the same time on the same day. | Majorca Daily Bulletin reporter


THE Balearic Minister for Economic Model, Tourism and Labour, Iago Negueruela, has said that the agreement to limit cruise ships in Palma “is in force” and “is being complied with”.
He made the statement in reply to PP MP Salomé Cabrera who raised the issue of the criticisms from the Platform against mega-cruises which a few weeks ago accused the government of non-compliance with this agreement.

With regards to the criticisms from the Platform, the minister explained that a few weeks ago three cruise ships arrived in the Balearic capital, but none of them exceeded the 5,000 passenger capacity agreed in the agreement.
The weekly average did not exceed 8,500 passengers or 2,000 passengers on average per day.

Specifically, the following cruise ships arrived in Palma: the Main Schiff with and capacity for 2,500 passengers; the MSC Fantasia, capacity for 4,000 passengers, and the Regal Princess with a capacity for 3,500 passengers.

“If the PP is associated with the GOB, the truth is that it is a great turn of events that you are having at the moment”, said Negueruela ironically.
For her part, the PP MP criticised the fact that in 2020 Negueruela “announced a moratorium without having any powers” and in 2021 “announced an agreement to limit cruise ships without consensus with the Balearic sector, nor with the government’s partner parties”.

Cabrera referred to the criticisms from the Platform against mega-cruises and expressed her concern about the way in with which the Balearic government is handling the issue. In her opinion, this limits on cruise ships “was a move to simply placate a section of the community”.

And, while this debate continues to rage, the cruise industry in Spain this year could register levels close to those reached in 2019, a year in which its turnover was close to 6,000 million euros, contributing 2,800 million euros to the national GDP, according to data from the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA).

The volume of stopovers scheduled for this year in Spain, where the mid-high season is just beginning, would be close to that operated in the year prior to the outbreak of the pandemic.
Spain is considered to be one of the world’s leading cruise destinations. The record achieved in 2018, with more than 10.1 million cruise passengers and 4,360 cruise ships, was surpassed in 2019, with a growth of 4.8%, exceeding 10.6 million cruise passengers in 2019.

These figures make Spain the second European destination with regard to the number of cruise passengers, placing several Spanish ports at the top of the European rankings, with Barcelona at the top of the list and among the world’s leading ports, followed by the ports of the Balearic and Canary Islands.

The director of CLIA in Spain, Alfredo Serrano, points out that this is “very good news as it is not only a recognition of the attractions of our country and the multitude of options offered by our destinations, but also one more step towards the consolidation of the recovery; an economic stimulus for numerous coastal areas which were badly hit by the paralysis of tourism”.

The Association has indicated that the outlook for the cruise industry this year is very positive and that this sector represents an important economic contribution for the cities in which it is developed.