Sydney Ports Welcomes Access Economic Report Into Cruise

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7th December 2009, 09:45pm - Views: 722
Sydney Ports Supports Cruise Industry Growth

Sydney Ports Corporation today welcomed the findings of an Access Economics Report which highlights the growth in Cruising and the sector's economic contribution to Sydney and the State Economy.

"The cruise industry is important to Sydney as we are Australia's premier cruise hub," Sydney Ports CEO Grant Gilfillan said today.

"We are the only Australian city to operate two purpose-built passenger terminals; at the Overseas Passenger Terminal and at Darling Harbor.

"Sydney Ports provides a safe and efficient port for Australian and international passengers and it will continue to invest in the maintenance and operation of two passenger terminals in Sydney Harbour.

"Even in recent tough economic times, the cruise industry has enjoyed year after year of steady growth and that trend is continuing.

"Today's Access Economics report confirms this recent growth and Sydney Ports continues to work closely with the cruise industry on issues to deal with forecast growth, passenger numbers, vessel visits and cruise facilities.

"In particular we participate in the NSW Government's Passenger Cruise Terminal Steering Committee alongside Carnival Cruise Lines and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines to address the infrastructure issues as identified in today's report.

"The Committee has been assessing options for the replacement cruise terminal for 8 Darling Harbour, West of the Harbour Bridge in light of the Barangaroo development.

"The next task for the Committee is to identify the long-term requirements for terminal capacity East of the Harbour Bridge.

Mr Gilfillan noted comments by Infrastructure Partnerships Australia which highlight the need for the Federal Government to include the Cruise Shipping Industry in its National Ports Strategy which is currently under development.

"In addition, Sydney Ports will consider these and other issues raised by the Access Report and looks forward to continuing the close constructive relationship we've built with the cruise industry since the 1960's when the first Cruise Passenger Terminal was built at Sydney Cove.

"In particular, last year's cruising season 2008/09 saw a record 120 cruise ships and more than 250,000 cruise passengers visit Sydney.

"The 2009/10 cruise season will be just as busy with a number of new vessels set to make their inaugural visits, including the Pacific Jewel, Balmoral and Seabourn Odyssey.

"This week sees a cavalcade of cruise ships entering Sydney Harbour, culminating in the newest addition to Sydney, the Pacific Jewel being officially named by the Governor General this Saturday evening.

"A total of 118 vessels and 250,000 passengers are scheduled to stop off in Sydney this season," Mr Gilfillan said.

Mr Gilfillan said Sydney recently took delivery of a new $3 million self supporting gangway at the Overseas Passenger Terminal which will mean improved passenger safety and comfort when boarding and disembarking.

"This state of the art gangway is part of the organisation's on-going investment in infrastructure to support the cruise industry.

Sydney's position as number one was recently re-affirmed with its port facilities receiving two industry accolades. In April this year, Sydney received an award for "Best Turnaround Port Operations" for 2008 by Dream World Cruise Destinations Magazine, the second time in four years. The Overseas Passenger Terminal was also recently voted 'Best Venue of the Year' at the BT Publishing E-Awards for excellence in events.

Peter Zangari
0408 441 010/ 9296 4995

SOURCE: Sydney Ports Corporation

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