Within the sector there are a small number of medium to big yards, which work mostly with large orders often from abroad. In addition, there are a number of smaller yards working mostly within the leisure craft sector.
The main market sectors are the following:
- design and production of:
- yacht medium/large (18m to 70m)
- fast ferries
- ro-ro ferries
- car carrier
- motor boats 4m to 12m (cabined, semi-cabined, open deck)
- shipbuilding components various
- refurbishment, conversions, maintenance of large ships
- garaging - repairs to small/medium sized craft
- research and development into new materials, building design, propulsion and self-contained energy systems.
Nationally, Sicily accounts for a little over 4% (on average) in terms of the number of businesses operating in the industry.
Market analysis reveals that Sicily has a great deal of potential for growth in this sector. The high performance on the foreign market in 2005 was the result of a series of large orders for the shipbuilding industry in Palermo, which came from the UK and the Netherlands, in addition to the usual flow of exports to France and the USA (average exports stand at 5 million euros p.a.) and Spain (approx. exports of 2 million euros p.a.).