Vanuatu Cruise Industry Takes Another Leap Forward

Golden Princess at Main Wharf (left) and Bosi Maru at Lapetasi Wharf

Vanuatu Cruise Industry takes another leap forward with a new milestone of berthing two cruise ships at once in Port Vila.

The completion of Lapetasi Wharf will certainly boost the Commercial Shipping capacity to Port Vila and recent articles from the paper have highlighted the potential benefits ahead for shippers.

South Sea Shipping Managing Director John Tonner explains, “An infrastructure investment of this size also has capacity to do more for our economy than only cargo, Cruise Tourism has been our national mainstay and the continued growth of this sector shows no signs of backing off”.

Yesterday the Golden Princess berthed at Main Wharf and the Bosi Maru at Lapetasi Wharf, it was a special day that had been coming for some time for the South Sea Shipping Managing Director.

Tonner said, “Today is an awesome day and is a result of the hard work of people like Acting Director General Tourism Mr George Borugu and General Manager VTO Ms Adela Aru. A few years ago George, Adela and I dreamed of having two ships berth in Port Vila at the same time and today it has finally happened.

“A big thank you to the Japanese Government and the future vision and belief of the Vanuatu Government, without the active leadership by senior Ministers days like this never happen.

“Tourism is the engine room of our economy and support from the current Minister for Tourism and Deputy Prime Minister Mr Joe Natuman, the Minister for Infrastructure Mr Jotham Napat and Minister for Internal Affairs Mr Andrew Napuat this engine can start to rev louder again.

“I am humbled by those in power who continue to work for this nation’s improvement, it is often hard work that is never seen and determined focused that is rarely appreciated that produces milestone like what we see today.

“South Sea Shipping also continues to drive the Cruise Industry and we have many exciting developments ahead.

“Vanuatu must strive to be the shinning jewel of South Pacific Cruise Tourism, our people, our Land and our hospitality is so uniquely powerful that we must share it with the world who visits our shores, everyone should be proud of this achievement and tourism is everyone’s business”.

Discussions continue to resolve the Land Transport problems and the changes empowered by the recently passed Municipal By-Law, is yet to have any real effect.

Conflicts down near Nambawan Cafe reflect very poorly on an overall tourism experience.

If Leadership can unite to achieve such outcomes as berthing two cruise ships then surely there is capacity to act and regulate the Public Land Transport Sector.

This paper recently reported court proceeding between Public Land Transport Authority, Shefa Port Vila Public Transport Association and Port Vila Cruise Association, what has come of this litigation and what steps are ahead, we will continue to follow this story and shine the light of day on proceedings because as Mr Tonner has highlighted, “Tourism is everybody’s business”.

(Source: TAM TAM Vanuatu Tourism Newsletter published in Vanuatu Daily Post 08 March 2018)
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