Gibraltar’s strategic location at the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea inevitably led to it becoming a prized naval fortress. It counts HMS Victory, after the damages suffered at the Battle of Trafalgar, as one of the ships that has been repaired at the naval base.
Today, Gibraltar’s location has continued to give it important benefits as a port. Located at a crossroads of Mediterranean and Atlantic shipping lanes, Gibraltar is ideally placed to provide a wide range of services to vessels of all sizes and types. It is one of the most important maritime crossroads in the world. Over 71,000 vessels transit the Strait of Gibraltar each year.
Gibraltar’s geographical location coupled with its competitive port dues and low costs because of its unique tax free status within the European Union has made the Rock a major bunkering station. The Government continues to ensure that safety and environmental concerns are given top priority and the Bunkering Code of Practice was recently updated in January 2011. Gibraltar also offers a wide range of other shipping services such as store replenishment, spares, general provisions and even crew changes.
Gibraltar is also an increasingly popular port of call for cruise liners, with an average of 220 vessels calling into Gibraltar every year bringing thousands of tourists to Gibraltar’s streets.
Gibraltar also has three marinas, which attracts short to medium stay visitors.
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