Cruise industry needs a clear path forward
Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) has renewed its call for the Australian Government to agree on a clear pathway to revival for the more than 18,000 Australians whose jobs rely upon cruise tourism.
Responding to the Federal Budget, CLIA Managing Director Australasia Joel Katz said the Government’s estimate that international tourism would not resume until mid-2022 was devastating for the entire Australian tourism industry.
“Tourism leaders are rightly calling for clarity from the Federal Government and backing for the thousands of Australian workers who depend on the visitor economy,” Mr Katz said. “This is especially true in the cruise sector where more than $5 billion has been wiped from the Australian economy over the past year and no commitment made for our industry’s revival.”
“Cruise lines globally have adopted extensive new health protocols to uphold safety in response to COVID-19 and these measures are already working successfully in other countries,” Mr Katz said. “We have held extensive discussions with Australian governments to outline these protocols in detail, and we now need an agreed framework to allow a carefully controlled resumption of cruising within an Australian bubble, as the first step towards recovery.”
Mr Katz said the cruise industry’s new health protocols included 100% testing of all passengers and crew – with a negative result required prior to boarding – as well as extensive protocols covering crew quarantine, distancing, sanitation, health monitoring and response procedures. With these measures in place, the industry is calling for a phased and carefully controlled resumption of domestic cruising in Australia, beginning with local cruises for locals-only while international borders remain closed