Carnival, Royal Caribbean and the St. Lucia government are joining forces to manage cruise pier and terminal facilities on St. Lucia, along with constructing a new cruise port on the southern part of the island.
A statement issued today by Carnival Corporation reveals that the three parties have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to form a joint venture that will include managing the existing cruise pier and terminal facilities at the Port of Castries.
The joint venture also covers designing, financing, constructing and operating a new cruise port in Vieux Fort on the southern part of the island that will be able to accommodate the latest ships in the cruise industry.
Saint Lucia’s Prime Minister, Allen Chastanet, called the MOU “historic” and “a major step toward enhancing Saint Lucia’s tourism product.”
“Saint Lucia has had record-breaking cruise arrivals over the past few years and we thank our partners Carnival Corporation and Royal Caribbean for their continued confidence in our amazing destination,” said Chastanet. “It is essential that we continue to diversify what we have to offer, grow our brand and ensure that different sectors in our island’s economy benefit from the growth in cruise tourism and that Saint Lucians can benefit from the opportunities which arise from the increased numbers; which means we have to improve our capacity.”
The project, said Chastanet, will have a major impact on the sustainability of the cruise sector and the reach of cruise tourism to the southern portion of the island.
The development is also expected to translate into new jobs to support several phases of the project, Chastanet added, as well as the expansion of existing businesses and the formation of new enterprises.
“We look forward to this partnership as this marks a new day and a significant achievement for our government, for the people of the south of Saint Lucia and for our island as a whole,” said Chastanet.
The cruise market is the fastest-growing sector of tourism and in the next decade cruising in the Caribbean region is anticipated to increase by 40 percent, according to Michael Bayley, president, and CEO of Royal Caribbean.
“We are excited to partner with the government of Saint Lucia to ensure that the destination directly benefits from that growth while giving more guests the opportunity to visit this unique gem in the Caribbean,” Bayley added.
Carnival Corporation and Royal Caribbean Cruises currently account for 75 percent of all cruise ship deployment to Saint Lucia.
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