Prime Minister Julia Gillard has announced that the Federal Government will guarantee three cruise ship berths per year at Garden Island over the next two cruise seasons.
The announcement was made to delegates at the NSW Labor conference yesterday and has been praised by Carnival Australia CEO Ann Sherry as a sufficient short term solution.
“In allowing access to Garden Island, the Federal Government has recognised cruising as the standout success of Australian tourism and its growing contribution to the national economy,” Ms Sherry said.
“The alternative, where cruise ships would be forced to moor mid harbour before ferrying passengers to shore in tender boats, would not only give international visitors a poor introduction to Sydney but also act as a brake on cruise industry growth.”
Cruise ships, including Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 have been permitted to berth at Garden Island on an ad hoc basis over the years.
ICCA general manager, Brett Jardine, joined Ms Sherry in his support of the move just months after the organisation announced the extensive growth of the cruise industry in 2011.
The cruise industry saw 34 per cent growth in 2011 with nearly 625,000 Australians taking a cruise vacation with the industry as a whole contributing $830 million to the Australian economy in 2010-2011.
NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell further highlighted the strength of the cruise industry in NSW and, whilst he agreed with the decision announced by the PM, believes the offer will need to be expanded in the future.
“The cruise ship industry is the strongest area of growth in tourism in NSW,” Mr O’Farrell told news.com.au.
“The way to meet the growing needs of the cruise ship industry is to share space at Garden Island. With the sort of growth we’re seeing three won’t be enough, but it’s a good start.”
It is expected that by 2015, a third of cruise ships visiting Sydney will be unable to sail under the Harbour Bridge with this figure increasing to 56 per cent by 2020.
If you could create a solution for Sydney’s cruise berthing issue. What would it be?
Monday, 16 July 2012
Three ship allowance for Garden Island
Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.A