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Crisis cripples used yacht sales

DRIEBERGEN – In the first quarter of 2013, sales of used sail and motor boats in the Netherlands fell by 25% compared to the same 2012 period, says HISWA, the Dutch yachting sector lobby. That steep drop follows a heartening 7% rise in used boat sales in all of 2012 over 2011. Still, HISWA sees a recovery of sorts this year. 

In Q1-2013, the difference in sales of used sail and motor yachts was negligible. HISWA says that “there is still demand for used boats, but prices are being forced down. Also, buyers are hesitant. The difficulty in obtaining credit is a factor here.”

HISWA refuses to see the outlook as hopeless. It says many brokers are “counting on improving sales. There is growing demand from abroad for good, used yachts from the Netherlands. There is interest in both motor and sailing yachts. Increasingly (Dutch) used yachts end up in Germany, Belgium and France but also farther afield. We see buyers from Russia and Croatia. April 2013 sales exceeded those of the same 2012 month. That may point to a continuation of a recovery that began in 2012.”

The Dutch boating sector is a formidable actor in the overall economy of the Netherlands. It employs 30,000 people, comprises 4,200 companies and exports exceeding €1.5 billion a year. The Netherlands counts for a quarter of all marinas in Europe.

 

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