Outrigger Hotels and Resorts

Published on Monday, July 19, 2021

CLIA warns of 'isolated' cruise industry in Australia

Australia is increasingly isolated as the only major cruise market in the world not taking meaningful action towards a revival of is cruise industry.

It comes as the Canadian Government cut short the current cruise ban and will allow ships to sail again from 1 November 2021.

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) made an impassioned plea to the federal government to take action.

It cites positive work in the US, UK, Europe and parts of Asia such as Hong Kong and Singapore which have restarted cruise operations.

"Like Australia, Canada has taken a very conservative and risk-averse approach to cruising, but they've worked hard with industry to develop a detailed pathway towards resumption and economic recovery," said CLIA Managing Director Australasia Joel Katz.

"By contrast, Australia has made no progress towards establishing a framework for future cruise operations, despite the availability of comprehensive new health protocols at the international level."

Katz said the cruise suspension had already cost Australia more than $6 billion since early 2020 and had put more than 18,000 jobs at risk, including travel agents, tour operators, farmers and food suppliers.

"Around 600,000 people have already sailed successfully in countries where cruising has resumed, bringing back economic opportunities for local communities," Katz said.

CLIA has continually called for Australia to agree upon detailed plans for a careful domestic cruising revival.

This would initially begin within an Australian bubble, involving domestic-only cruises for local residents only.

"As Canada has recognised, it will take months of careful planning to revive cruise tourism," Katz added.

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