The International Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA) has announced the addition of another Latin American member to the organisation, in addition to Brazil and Argentina. The Nautical Association of Colombia, ASONAUTICA COLOMBIA, aims to represent, promote and defend navigational and cultural interests, tourism and recreational water sports in Colombia.

Conceived in February this year, it currently has 30 members from the private yachting industry and the government. The association is comprised of four categories: marinas and yacht clubs; shipyards, distributors, boat dealers and nautical service providers; suppliers of nautical tourism services and water sports; and associate organisations. spoke to Antonella Farah, executive director of ASONAUTICA to find out what the new association’s aims are and why Colombia is an ideal place to focus marine business, specifically for the superyacht industry.

“The association seeks to raise awareness within the country and promote nautical culture, so as to better impact the laws that improve the competitiveness of the sector,” explained Farah. “The goal is to work on industry consolidation and strengthening its capacities, therefore, we are leading efforts to introduce more favourable conditions and more optimal settings.”

“We also want to establish a presence in various international destinations. On the other hand, we are working directly with the national government for the development of investment projects in infrastructure for sailing,” she added, emphasising the sailing sector’s importance to the sustainable development of the Colombian coast.

In addition to conducting various studies along the coast to solve marine-related problems, there is also, “a plan for nautical tourism,” Farah continued. “Each of our coasts has points that we must develop to facilitate market entry for superyachts.”

She asserted that its scenery and importantly, its “location being outside the hurricane zone is the greatest competitive advantage,” complement its ideal location for development in the superyacht sector.

“The Association Nautica must ensure that the national government provide the necessary conditions to encourage the creation of a new tourism infrastructure, primarily for the megayacht market, for which existing projects are being managed,” she explained.

March saw the organisation's participation in its first event: the Cartagena International Boat Show.

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