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Cruise ship industry could be revived after two-year ban

  • The Cruise Lines International Association estimates the ban has cost the Aussie economy A$10 billion.
  • Australia’s cruise industry actually grew 11.2% in value during the 2018-19 financial year.
  • The ban will be reviewed and could be lifted by the Federal Health Minister on February 17.

Australia’s ban on cruise ships entering the country could be lifted in 10 days as the industry reels from the pandemic and seeks to recover from billions lost in revenue.

Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt has said he will review the ban on February 17, which is a welcomed move by the industry.

The Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) estimates that the ban, which came into effect in March 2020, has cost the Australian economy A$10 billion.

According to a report commissioned by the CLIA and the Australian Cruise Association (ACA), before COVID-19 the Australian cruise industry grew 11.2% in value during the 2018-19 financial year, contributing A$5.2 billion in direct and indirect output to the economy.

The stalled cruise vessel sector copped another blow recently when international giant Carnival cancelled its operations in Australia at least until October 2023.

However, the 2023-2024 cruise season could be when the sector is revived with Celebrity Edge, which is a US$1 billion outward-facing ship with multi-floor suites and a giant spa – set to debut in Australia.

Meanwhile, luxury cruise ship operator Crystal Cruise had several vessels seized by US Marshals in the Bahamas yesterday amid allegations that its Miami-based owner failed to pay US$4.6 million in fuel bills.

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