The contract for two cruise ships to be built for Carnival Corp’s new Chinese cruise line has been signed – marking a milestone as they will be the first units of this kind ever made in China for the Chinese market.
The newbuilds, valued at about US$1.5Bn, not counting the options for additional four vessels, will be built by Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding Co (SWS), a subsidiary of China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC).
The joint venture set up by Fincantieri and CSSC Cruise Technology Development Co (CCTD) will grant a technology licence 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 Chinese travellers 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 on the joint venture between Carnival Corporation and CSSC, Carnival Corporation chief executive Arnold Donald 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 travellers.”
Costa Group and Carnival Asia group chief executive Michael Thamm 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”.
CSSC chairman Lei Fanpei said “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 co-operation 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”.
Fincantieri chief executive Giuseppe Bono 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”.