The Asia cruise industry continues to hold top ranking place as a global emerging market for destinations and as a source market for 2016-2017, top industry executives have confirmed at the recent Seatrade Cruise Asia event, held in Busan, Korea.
Attendees to the 2-day exhibition and conference heard from nearly 30 speakers representing global cruise lines as well as key industry stakeholders and government officials.
Hot on the agenda was how the Asia region can increase its presence in the burgeoning global cruise industry and the opportunities presented by expansion of the cruise fleet in Asian waters.
Mike Pawlus, director of strategic itinerary & destination planning for Azamara Club Cruises, said: ‘The strong turnout at this conference is an indication of how important the Asian region is becoming to the Cruise Industry. I expect you will see more and more ships cruising in this region in the years to come’
Commenting on the success of Seatrade Cruise Asia, which saw over 2000 attendees, Andrew Williams, general manager, Seatrade, said: ‘The timing of this event could not be better. Five years ago cruise travel was almost unheard of in Asia and today the region is the fastest growing in the global cruise market with 2,080,998 Asian passengers registered in 2015, compared to 1,685,455 in 2014 – representing a 23.5% year-on-year increase.’ He also made reference to the ‘unprecedented nine newbuilds that are specifically destined to come into the Asia/Australasia cruise market by 2020, bringing a wealth of opportunities to the region.’
He also added, ‘We are extremely pleased with feedback received at Seatrade Cruise Asia, and that the event was so successful for many attendees. I must say thank you to the event hosts Busan Port Authority, Busan Metropolitan City and Korea Tourism Organization for making us all feel so welcome in their great city as well as the many Cruise Line Executives and speakers who joined us. We now look forward to the widely anticipated Seatrade Asia Pacific Cruise Congress in Shanghai, taking place 11-13 October 2016 with early demand suggesting it will be a sell-out event.’
A further highlight of Seatrade Cruise Asia was the presentation of the Rama Rebbapragada Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Cruise Industry in Asia. This top accolade was awarded to Bob Guy, managing director – singapore & malaysia for destination asia, in recognition of his long, outstanding engagement within the cruise industry in Asia.
Further success of the event was also cemented with news that Seatrade Asia Pacific Cruise Congress in Shanghai, which takes place from 11-13 October 2016, has already generated huge interest from international cruise lines keen to share their knowledge to delegates.
Special acknowledgement for Seatrade Cruise Asia goes to event sponsors, MedCruise and Wonderful Indonesia, and supporters CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association) the Ministry of Culture Sports & Tourism and the Ministry of Oceans & Fisheries.