Published on : Wednesday, October 8, 2014
Ms Asher said the upcoming season will be the busiest yet, with the state welcoming 85 ship visits between October 2014 and June 2015.
“The Victorian Coalition Government is committed to ensuring our state shares in the considerable economic benefits generated by cruise shipping, which is the fastest growing segment of the global tourism market,” Ms Asher said.
“This season will see 12 more ship visits to our state than in 2013/14, and 28 more than two years ago.”
The number of Australians taking a cruise is growing by 20 per cent a year and it’s expected that one million Australians will cruise annually by 2016.
Cruise Down Under’s most recent economic impact study showed that cruise ships contributed $3.16 billion to the Australian economy in 2013/14.
In that time, major cruise ships visited Melbourne, Geelong and Portland, generating more than $296 million in direct expenditure and a further $139.3 million in indirect benefits.
Ms Asher acknowledged the role of Carnival Corporation and PLC, the world’s largest cruise operator and the owner of Princess Cruises, for its key role in driving the growth of cruise shipping in Victoria.
“Three Princess Cruises ships – The Diamond Princess, The Dawn Princess, and The Sun Princess – will visit Melbourne between now and April 2015,” Ms Asher said.
“The trio will make a total of 24 Melbourne port calls, accounting for almost a third of the city’s total ship visits.”
A further 14 Carnival-owned ships will visit Melbourne this season, while the Seabourn Odyssey will also call in at Geelong and the Pacific Jewel and Pacific Pearl will visit Portland.
The Mornington Peninsula will receive its first ever visit by a passenger liner with the arrival of the Pacific Pearl early next year.
Princess Cruises is planning to increase its capacity in Victoria by 23 per cent next year, when it will send the Golden Princess to Melbourne to mark the company’s Golden Anniversary.