Catamaran line Pula – Mali Lošinj – Zadar was turned into a year-round to respond to the needs and demands of citizens.
The Ministry of the Sea, Transport and Infrastructure signed an agreement on joint financing of the state fast ferry line Pula – (Unije – Susak) – Mali Lošinj – (Ilovik – Silba) – Zadar, which the Government decided to upgrade from a seasonal line to a year-round ferry line, reports Zadarski list on November 1, 2017.
According to the signed agreement, line costs are jointly covered by the Coastal Shipping Agency, three counties – Istarska, Primorsko-goranska and Zadarska – and three cities, Pula, Mali Lošinj and Zadar.
“This goes to show that the government together with counties and cities can do good things. This is an indication that we can organise and co-finance other lines the same way, says Minister Oleg Butković, saying that the goal of such lines is to help keep people on the islands by better connecting them, thus encouraging the development of tourism on the islands.
Jadrolinija to run the line
The government decided in December last year that this fast ferry line would become a year-round. In April, a competition was announced, and Jadrolinija was chosen to run the line. Line maintenance costs for the period from June to December amount to HRK 4.5 million. The Coastal Maritime Traffic Agency covers about 3.5 million. Each of the three included counties provides about 160 thousand kunas, the same as the three included cities. The signed co-financing agreement relates to this year, but the line will be run from 2018 onwards.
State Secretary for Sea Maja Markovcic Kostelac pointed out that liner traffic is one of the pillars of island development and tourism development, claiming that the catamaran line Pula – Mali Lošinj – Zadar was turned into a year-round “to respond to the needs and demands of citizens”. A similar co-financing model should be applied to other lines as well as connecting other islands, cities and towns with nearby settlements at its outskirts or certain parts of cities. According to the State Secretary, Jadrolinija is also negotiating a new fleet modernization plan.
Five times a day during high season
Agreements on joint financing were signed yesterday at the Ministry by the Director of the Coastal Transport Agency Paula Vidović, deputy County Prefect of Zadar County Šime Mišic, deputy county of Primorje-Gorski Kotar County Marina Medarić, Mali Lošinj Mayor Ana Kučić, Mayor of Pula Boris Miletić and Vice President of Economy, Entrepreneurship and Development of the Islands of Zadar, Ivica Katić.
Jadrolinija catamaran “Novalja” will operate on this line [transporting only foot-passengers]. During the so-called “low season”, from June 2 to June 29 and from September 4 to October 1, two return trips per day are planned. In the “high season” from June 30 to September 3, five trips a day, and during the off-season, from October 2 to the end of the year, one trip per day. From June to August this year, 24,164 passengers travelled this line.
Translated from Zadarski list