Sea transport between Gozo and Malta registers an increase
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In the fourth quarter of 2007, commuters between Gozo and Malta increased by 1.7 per cent, totalling 785,835. Furthermore, the number of vehicles carried by scheduled vessels went up by 2.6 per cent, totalling 224,127. On breaking up the reference quarter into the respective months, the data show that year on year, December registered an increase in the number of trips and decreases in commuters and vehicles carried. Conversely, October and November registered decreases in trips and increases in commuters and vehicles carried.
This increase in demand was met by an increase in supply. The number of trips in the fourth quarter stood at 4,739, implying an increase of 1.0 per cent over the comparable period in 2006. The highest number of trips was recorded in December – 1,602 or 33.8 per cent of the total number of trips for the quarter.
During the fourth quarter in 2007, the Ta’ Pinu vessel reduced its trips by 675 when compared to the corresponding period in the preceding year. Conversely, the Gaudos and the Malita increased their trips by 392 and 331 respectively, to compensate for the decrease in the Ta’ Pinu load and to cater for the increase in demand.
On an annual basis, 2007 saw increases from all aspects. Overall, the total number of trips increased by 505 or 2.6 per cent over the previous year. The number of vehicles carried increased by 76,042 or 8.1 per cent, while the numberof commuters increased by 240,407 or 6.8 per cent.
The global average number of passengers carried in 2007 stood at 193 per trip or 4.3 per cent higher than in 2006. The global average number of vehicles carried also registered an increase, standing at 51 vehicles per trip or 4.1 per cent more than the previous year.