‘Without government support the cruise industry would not be able to progress to the point it is now.’
He hopes the government will help iron out some of the difficulties the decade-old China cruise industry is encountering and is confident the government will deal with the issues such as delayed departures and port access channel bottlenecks, which he said he was sure were, temporary problems.
With Shanghai Baoshan, now being the largest cruise port in Asia, Liu also said the industry needs better service levels. His rally call was: ‘Let’s work together for the betterment of the cruise industry.’
Xu Kunlin, vice mayor Shanghai Municipal Government, remarked that since 2006, cruise calls to the city have increased tenfold, from 50 to 500.
‘Over the years we have persisted in enhancing the position of the Shanghai as a cruise centre,’ he said. ‘With its ancillary support industries such as shipyards for building and repair, Shanghai has become the pilot site for China’s cruise industry, and a launch pad and role model for the China cruise industry as a whole.
‘We are building a maritime silk road which is becoming a modern day link bridge between East and West, he concluded.
Madam Wang Hong Party Secretary General, Shanghai Baoshan People’s Government, said she had just returned from the recent watershed Chinese Communist Party meeting in Beijing. She urged stakeholders to pursue the dream of creating a new era of a thriving China cruise economy. She said there already have been great accomplishments, in full view of the world stage, including becoming the second largest cruising nation in the world.
‘The world is watching China’s cruise development,’ she commented.
She said the country had gone from having no cruise terminals and facilities for cruise, to now having established infrastructure and a stable phase of 20% qualitative growth. Previously growth was at a rapid 70% and was more quantitative, she observed. ‘Now we talking more about standardization and localization,’ she said.
Wang gave a comprehensive picture of the state of the China cruise industry and talked about ‘stimulating the energy of the cruise industry process and creating a value chain of services with simplified documentation processes.
‘There will also be guidance to build brand strategies, IP and legal support,’ she added.
She said to protect the rights of consumers the authorities are going to step up safety and regulation, and provide greater transparency and conduits for consumer issues.