Blue lagoon

A coalition of stakeholders in Malta’s maritime industry have called for the upscaling of existing marinas and quays in the country, in order to help attract more investment and bring more yachting enthusiasts to the country.

As part of this, they called for an upgrade of the Blue Lagoon quay for embarkation and disembarkation of passengers, due to the current quay being “too small” and only able to accommodate one boat at a time.

Issuing a list of proposals ahead of the upcoming General Election, the Maritime Cooperative Network (MCN), which is comprised of six cooperatives working directly with the maritime industry, pointed out that the current limitations of the quay lead to unnecessary queues.

However, despite the upsizing, the network insisted that the new quay should be one that respects the surrounding environment.

Aside from the Blue Lagoon quay upgrade, the MCN predicted that the upgrading of existing marinas and yachting facilities would in turn attract investment in high class restaurants and entertainment outlets, in turn attracting more yachting enthusiasts to Malta and thus bringing more crew to the country.

Members of the MCN include Comino Ferries Cooperative Ltd, Malta Boatmen and Mooring Services Cooperative, Malta Maritime Pilots Cooperative Ltd, Malta Mooring Masters Cooperative Ltd, the Mediterranean Maritime Research and Training Centre Cooperative Ltd, and Ports Foreman Cooperative Ltd.

Its stated mission is to facilitate collaboration between its members with the aim of advancing the interest of the Maltese maritime industry.

Aside from the aforementioned proposal aiming to improve the country’s marinas and quays, the network notably also called for the creation of a dedicated Maritime Authority outside of the remit of Transport Malta, and the creation of a Minister solely responsible for maritime affairs and the so-called blue economy.

“The Maritime industry is vital and strategic for the Maltese economy,” MCN said, adding: “It deserves the highest consideration in Government strategies and policies.”

Other proposals include:

  • Increased consultation with maritime professionals
  • The creation of a maritime strategy
  • The promotion of maritime-focused research, education, training, skills and competences
  • The consolidation of the Maltese maritime industry’s position at the international level
  • A reduction in ‘red tape’ in the industry
  • The introduction of financial incentives for the sector
  • The creation of “adequate and safe” conditions for all maritime professionals
  • The utilisation of the skills of former maritime professionals

The organisation concluded that these proposals are the result of dialogue between members of the member cooperatives that form a chain of inter-related activities which, in turn, interact with a much wider network of economic providers in related sectors to offer the client on the international market a complete, professional and attractive proposition.

“With these proposals, and with its wider work, the network intends to positively influence Malta’s maritime policies,” it said.

The full list of proposals can be accessed online.

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