Fincantieri: Progress In The Chinese Projects – The contracts related to the construction of the cruise ships for CSSC Carnival Cruise Shipping have been signed

The contracts that seal the agreements announced in February 2017 concerning the construction of two cruise ships for CSSC Carnival Cruise Shipping Limited, which will be the first units of this kind ever made in China for the Chinese market, have been signed.

The project, which has a total value of about 1.5 billion dollars, not counting the options for additional 4 vessels, will be achieved by Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding Co., Ltd (SWS), a subsidiary of China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC).

The joint venture set up by Fincantieri and CSSC Cruise Technology Development Co. Ltd (CCTD) will grant a technology license of the ship model platform and provide a series of technical services to SWS, including project management activities, supply chain management and sales of fundamental systems and components of the ship.

The design will be tailored for the specific tastes of the Chinese travelers and for CSSC Carnival Cruise Shipping Limited, the new Chinese cruise brand of the joint venture between Carnival Corporation and CSSC, which will also operate the units. The first delivery is expected in 2023.

Commenting the constitution of the joint venture between Carnival Corporation and CSSC, Arnold Donald, CEO of Carnival Corporation, said: “The official launch of our cruise joint venture in China is a significant milestone in the strategic development of a strong and sustainable cruise industry in China. Together with our partners, we are excited about our ability to launch a new cruise line in China based on existing ships and new China-built cruise ships tailored for Chinese travelers”.

Michael Thamm, Group CEO, Costa Group and Carnival Asia, added: “The new cruise joint venture complements our existing presence in the market and strengthens our commitment to help China build a holistic ecosystem and become a leading global cruise market”.

“It is a strategic decision for CSSC to enter into the cruise industry in partnership with Carnival Corporation and Fincantieri” said Lei Fanpei, Chairman of CSSC. “Through the partnership with leading international enterprises, we will build a whole industrial chain including the cruise ship design and building, operations and supply chain, jointly promote policy environment improvements and create an ecosystem that will nurture the sustainable growth of the cruise industry. Our cooperation continues to receive great support from the Chinese government at both the central and local levels. We wish to continue our win-win partnership from today on, to ensure the delivery of the first large cruise ship to be built in China by 2023”.

Giuseppe Bono, CEO of Fincantieri, stated: “This further achievement represents the best proof that the supervision of a strategic and high-potential market such as the Chinese one progresses with great determination and in unison to two champions such as Carnival Corporation and CSSC and it demonstrates the huge importance of the operation”. Bono then concluded: “Claiming that China represents an opportunity is now reductive: it is a reality that cannot be feared, but, on the contrary, that has to be assisted. It is this great country itself which is asking for this, recognizing our leadership in this sector”.

As the world’s top outbound tourism market, China’s 142 million outbound travelers spent an estimated $ 258 billion traveling abroad in 2017, according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). By comparison, the Chinese cruise industry served only about 2.5 million cruise passengers last year, representing less than two percent of China’s outbound global travelers.

As a large, embryonic and underpenetrated cruise market with continued long-term projections for outbound tourism growth, China represents a significant opportunity for the cruise industry to raise awareness, consideration and demand for cruise vacations in coming years. As the industry continues to grow and develop in the region, China is widely expected to eventually become the largest cruise market in the world.