Catamaran ‘Punta Europa Segundo’ sailed its name to history when it made the inaugural journey to Gibraltar from port of Algeciras, Southern Spain. The 150-seated Catamaran marked the recommencement of the ferry link between Spain and Gibraltar, which was closed by Spanish dictator Francisco Franco in 1969 in a bid to increase restrictions against Gibraltar.
Spanish company Transcoma will manage the daily service between the two points and aims to serve both tourists as well as Spanish nationals working in Gibraltar. The service is expected to cater half a million passengers annually.
According to a statement issued by the Foreign Ministry of Spain, this move is a part of Spain’s objective to promote social and economic development of Gibraltar. In 1979, Spain stopped air links with Gibraltar and resumed them again in 2006. Land links were resumed with Gibraltar in 1985.
Spain ceded Gibraltar to Britain in 1713 but retained its constitutional claim. In 2002, people of Gibraltar had summarily rejected a proposal of co-governance by both England and Spain.