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Indian cruise market to grow 10 times in a decade, says Sonowal

Published - April 21, 2022 09:49 pm IST - Mumbai

‘In 2019, we had more than 400 cruise vessels coming to our shores, and reached four lakh cruise passengers’

The Indian cruise market has the potential to grow by 10 times over the next decade, driven by rising demand and disposable income of Indians, said Sarbananda Sonowal, Union Minister of Ports, Shipping and Waterways and AYUSH, Government of India at a virtual press conference. 

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He was announcing the upcoming 1st Incredible India International Cruise Conference 2022 which will be held physically in Mumbai from May 14 to 15.

“Indian cruise market has the potential to grow by ten times over the next decade”, the Minister said adding, “the Sagarmala initiative is connecting the ports of Chennai, Vizag and Andaman with Goa, which receive maximum tourists”.

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“The conference on international cruise tourism aims to showcase India as a desired destination for cruise passengers, highlight the regional connectivity, and disseminate information about India’s preparedness for developing the cruise tourism sector”, he said.

Sanjeev Ranjan, Secretary, Ministry of Ports, Shipping & Waterways, said there was a 35% year-on-year growth in cruise tourism until the COVID pandemic set in.

“In 2019, we had more than 400 cruise vessels coming to our shores, and reached four lakh cruise passengers”, he said.

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He added that despite the COVID setback, India’s ports had been able to develop the infrastructure needed to make the landing of cruise passengers easier in the last two years.

Rajiv Jalota,Chairman, Mumbai Port Authority said, “Through this initiative, we aim to promote cruise tourism and attract tourists with specific interests. Mumbai has been the cruise capital of India and has persistently seen a rise in the growth of cruise passengers and cruise vessels before the pandemic”.

Sanjay Bandopadhyay, Chairman- Inland Waterways Authority of India, said, “This conference will attract more global players and will have all the operators in global cruise tourism. River tourism is one of the fastest-growing sectors.”

The conference aims to position India as a global cruise hub and showcase business and investment opportunities in the cruise tourism sector. 

Ministry of Ports, Shipping & Waterways, Government of India, the Mumbai Port Authority, and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) are organising the two-day event.

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