The Spanish shipbuilding industry will be at the forefront of this year's Shipbuilding, Machinery & Marine Technology International Trade Fair (SMM 2000), which will be held in Hamburg, Germany from September 26-30. With the efforts of Instituto Español de Comercio Exterior (ICEX), the conference will bring together, in the Spanish pavilion, the biggest ever representation of Spanish shipyards at one exclusive international event.
Scheduled to appear are approximately one dozen national shipyards in the Spanish pavilion. Various companies, specifically shipbuilders, will put on the widest-ranging exhibit that the sector has ever mustered at an international event. The gamut of shipyards will be represented, ranging from specialists in complex units for the offshore industry to shipbuilders of recognized prestige in the fishing sector, all of whom will make good use of this exposition as a platform for displaying their wares to the world's shipowners.
Despite its downsizing, shipbuilding is still an important industrial sector in Spain. With 35 newbuilding yards plus 16 specialized in repair and conversions, it generates 11,000 direct jobs and 41,000 indirect jobs. The sector closed the 1999 financial year with a turnover of more than $1.4 billion, derived from the construction of ships with a total CGT of 350,000.
Spanish shipbuilding is also traditionally an export industry, with more than 85 percent of its production shipped to overseas customers. In 1999, export sales included three shuttle tankers for the North Sea, seven chemical carriers, five Ro-Pax ferries
, 11 state-of-the-art tugs and 18 high-technology fishing vessels
for catching and processing fish.
As part of its overall strategy for responding to the fierce competition from the Far East, the industry is still working on ongoing improvements in the sector.
Aside from new construction, the repair and conversion sector in Spain has taken an upward swing. Shipowners from all over the world are turning to Spanish repairers in light of their proven track record for high quality work carried out on schedule.
The following is a list of Spanish shipyards, (followed by a brief description), which will be present at SMM 2000:
Astilleros Armón: With three shipyards in the northwest of Spain, this is one of the most active European builders of fishing vessels of any type, exported all over the world.
Astilleros Canarios (Astican): Located in Las Palmas de Gran Canarias, Astican's Syncrolift platform enables it to drydock more than 200 ships a year for all types of repairs.
Astilleros De Santander (Astander): Recently privatized, Astander boasts a modern site and equipment, as well as recognized prestige in the repair and conversion of ships of all types.
Astilleros Españoles: This well-regarded Spanish shipbuilder is comprised of five yards - (Sestao, Juliana, Astano, Puerto Real and Sevilla) - building ships and offshore units for shipowners from all over the world, and two repair yards - (Cádiz and Ferrol).
Astilleros La Parrilla: Located on the Cantabrian Sea in Asturias, this shipyard has specialized traditionally in the construction and repair of fishing vessels.
Astilleros Zamakona: From its site in the Port of Bilbao, it builds ships of all types, but especially the latest generation tugs for shipowners throughout the world.
Bazán: Well known as a builder of warships, Bazán will be representative of its Shiprepair division, which owns three shipyards (Ferrol, Cádiz and Cartagena) specializing in repairs.
Euripar: A recently set-up group of Basque shipyards representing Astilleros Balenciaga, Astilleros de Murueta and Astilleros de Pasaia representing both new construction and repair.
Union Naval Barcelona: Located within the Port of Barcelona, its comprehensive site offers round-the-clock service specializing in the repair and maintenance of cruise ships.
Unión Naval Valencia: Known as the biggest private Spanish shipyard, Union Naval Valencia specializes in a variety of cruise and passenger ships for prestigious shipowners.