“We carried out an economic impact study together with University of Barcelona regarding cruise activity generated by the port that shows this industry has a gross total turnover of almost 800 million euro,” said Mar Perez, head of cruise for the Port of Barcelona.

She said the cruise industry is responsible for 7,000 jobs in Barcelona, and being a turnaround port, helps drive economic impact as passengers often package pre- and post-cruise stays in the Spanish city.

Another major concern among Barcelona residents is environmental, stemming from emissions, while the ship is docked, even if running on low-sulfur fuel as required by IMO regulations.

 “We’re aware of this concern and we want to explain and reassure citizens. We’re also carrying out an air quality study related on the ships’ emissions,” continued Perez.

Barcelona has been among the top ports in the world and in Europe for decades, and expects over 2.5 million passengers this year.