Listen up, Jadrolinija–they’re talking to you! Upgrade your fleet, add coastal cruises and improve inter-island transport. At least, that’s my interpretation of the technical jargon that follows.
This from Lloyd’s List:
AS Croatia prepares to enter the European Union, strategic reforms and
structural change are necessary if the country’s ferry operators are to
compete effectively, writes Sandra Speares.
In a paper presented in the Maritime Policy and Management journal, Heidi
Cottam, Michael Roe and Jonathan Challacombe of Plymouth University’s centre
of international shipping and logistics say that Croatian fleets are
suffering from “obsolete vessels with inferior technology, operating
regional networks with point-to-point routings instead of global service
According to the paper, EU enlargement “has changed the meaning of the
Adriatic as a traffic corridor for tourism.
“Today, Croatian maritime transport systems must be considered in relation
to the interconnectivity of regional transit networks.”
The paper urges Croatia to seek to improve the standard of passenger
transport to that of the Single European Transport Policy.
The paper also advocates a return to the cruise industry by Croatian
shipping companies, initially by means of state concessions, but in the
longer term through private funding and financing initiatives.
The authors suggest that “Croatian operators should develop a modest fleet
of contemporary cruise liners on the Adriatic, to niche markets that are not
in direct competition with the leading operators”.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development agreed a ?26.5m
($35.5m) loan to modernise the port of Dubrovnik at the beginning of 2005,
to ensure that the port would be able to accommodate three 300 m ships at
one time, although the authors say that more investment is needed to improve
Croatia’s traffic network.
While Croatia has the chance to move back into the international cruise
market, the paper says, capital remains in short supply, as is the case with
the short sea ferry fleet where investment has been limited.
It recommends that short sea ferries “should now be directed towards the
international cross-trades with increased emphasis on geographical and
Government support, the paper says, will be needed to “overcome the conflict
between the interests of the shipping and tourism industries and that of the