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Today's signing signals that China's first large-scale cruise newbuild is moving from planning to implementation phase

Shanghai yard inks 2+2 order for Carnival Vista-type ships for China

China’s Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding (SWS) targets a 2022 delivery for its first mega cruise ship of 133,500gt under a joint venture involving the shipyard’s parent, China State Shipbuilding Corp. (CSSC), China Investment Corp, Carnival Corp. & plc and Fincantieri.

The cruise ship will be based on the Carnival Vista design with a length of 323 meters, 15 decks and capacity for 5,000. It is intended for a brand that will serve Chinese travelers and will be customized for the market.

On Friday in Tianjin all the parties signed a non-binding memorandum of agreement, subject to financing and other conditions, which involves two firm orders and two options. The 2022 date for the first delivery is two years later than the originally reported year.

The signing ceremony signaled that China’s first large-scale cruise ship has advanced from the planning phase to the implementation stage.

'As we work with our Chinese partners to launch the first domestic Chinese cruise brand in the next few years, being able to offer cruises on China-built cruise ships represents a new opportunity for us to generate excitement and demand for cruising amongst a broader segment of the Chinese vacation market, which is already the largest in the world and continues to see strong growth every year,' said Alan Buckelew, global chief operations officer for Carnival Corp. & plc.

The project was born out of a partnership forged in October 2015 between CSSC, China Investment Corp. and Carnival Corp. & plc to establish a joint venture in Hong Kong to explore the Chinese market for cruises.

CSSC is tapping into Italy's highly seasoned shipbuilder, Fincantieri, to help with technical support and design work.

The signing took place at the 11th annual China Cruise Shipping and International Cruise Expo.


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