AENIB celebrates the XIV Nautical Sector Awards

AENIB celebrates the XIV Nautical Sector Awards
The first face-to-face edition of the annual AENIB gala after the pandemic

The Annual General Meeting and the subsequent Awards Gala of the Association of Nautical Companies in the Balearic Islands (AENIB) was held at Palma Aquarium this Thursday. Close to a hundred people connected to marine industries, along with the main authorities related to the sector gathered together for this meeting with a special significance. It was the first face-to-face gala held in two years, as the 35th anniversary celebration last year could not be held due to restrictions arising from the pandemic.

Among the invited authorities were the Minister of Mobility and Housing of the Balearic Government, Josep Marí, as well as the general directors Xavier Ramis (Maritime and Air Transport) and Antonio Baos, (Vocational Training and Higher Artistic Education). Also in attendance were presidents of various associations and federations of the sector, as well as Carlos Sanlorenzo, president of the National Association of Nautical Companies (ANEN), the country-wide organization of the sector that AENIB represents in the Balearic Islands, the autonomous community of reference in the nautical field.

During his speech, Minister Marí stressed that "the Government has it clear that the Balearic Islands must not turn their back on the sea" and described the nautical sector as "an emerging sector and a reference worldwide, thanks to the privileged location of the archipelago and the perseverance and ability to adapt of the companies in the sector". He also stated that "the nautical sector is key to the transformation of our economic model, with enormous potential to generate quality jobs. Our commitment is to continue to support the sector and to support nautical training, with projects such as the Centre de la Mar de Mahón", a benchmark training centre inaugurated a few months ago. Finally, he reiterated on the Government's "offer of dialogue with strategic sectors such as the nautical sector".

Touching the same subject, the president of AENIB, Jaume Vaquer, stressed during his speech that "sailing is a great engine for the economy of the islands, and can be even more so if we continue to support it with renewed strength. A good example of this is the recent opening of the Centre de la Mar in Menorca. This centre of reference places the Balearic Islands as a pioneer in nautical training for the whole of Spain and opens up a path full of opportunities," he stressed.

"35 years is a long time," Vaquer reflected. "We have accumulated a lot of experience and there are many people who have supported us and who contribute their wisdom and know-how to the sector every day. This is our best heritage and our greatest guarantee, especially in the turbulent times we are living through, when we´ve had to dust off words we thought were of the past, such as pandemic or war. When supply chains that we thought were unbreakable are beginning to fail. When transport, commodity and energy prices are soaring. When so many things are going wrong, that is when we need everyone's hands the most to bring this ship we are all on to safety," he remarked.

The award winners

During the gala, the 14th Nautical Sector Awards were presented by AENIB to prominent figures and entities in the nautical sector. Tomás Garrido Serra received special recognition for his work in the creation of the Association of Nautical Companies in the Balearic Islands. Garrido was vice president of the Mallorca Chamber of Commerce in the decisive years when AENIB was forged in the early 80s, encouraging Margarita Dahlberg, the historic president of the entity for 20 years, to take the reins of what is now the reference association in the marine industry.

For his part, Miguel Salom Ribot was recognised for a lifetime effort in favour of the nautical sector at the head of the company Nautipaints, paving the way for companies that make up the business fabric of the sector in the Balearic Islands. Nautipaints is one of the Balearic nautical companies with the greatest international projection. It was founded in 1971 by Miguel Salom, under the name of Nauti-Pesca Can Miquel, becoming in the 90s and onwards a leading international company in superyacht maintenance.

Ferdinautic in turn received the award for its professional trajectory. Founded in 1990, this well-known company has more than 30 years of experience in the world of sports boats. The company has a technical team specialised in repair, assembly and after-sales service of generators, electromechanical systems, refrigeration, air conditioning, electrical systems, pumps, batteries, etc.

Lastly, Jaume Vermell Náutica has been awarded the prize for loyalty and permanence in AENIB. With more than 30 years of experience in the sector, this company founded in 1991 was initially dedicated to the repair service of speed boats, to later become distributors and official technical service of prestigious brands of nautical engines.

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