Mumbai, Jan 09: Mumbai would be a cruising hub and have a "world-class cruise terminal", to be set up by the Mumbai Port Trust.
"Expression of Interests would be invited shortly for building the cruise terminal that would have a marina, a convention centre, hotels, entertainment places," Mumbai Port Trust (MPT) Deputy Chairman Ashok Kumar Bal told a news agency.
This terminal is to be set up as a joint venture with public-private partnership.
"The port has made pioneering efforts to encourage cruise shipping in India. About 67,000 passengers took to cruise shipping last year. And this year, it is expected to cross one lakh," he said.
The port receives about 25-30 international cruise ships now, up from 18 in 2004-05, he said.
The global scenario for cruise shipping is gaining momentum, with an annual growth of 10-20 per cent in the cruise ship fleet and passengers. Mumbai, Kochi and Mormugao are the ports that are seeing an increase in cruise shipping.
Seeing a growth in people opting for cruise travel, the Central government is working on a cruise shipping policy.
With the economy growing at an impressive rate of 8 per cent per annum, the disposable income of a large section of society is also increasing.
Experience in the Caribbean, Latin American and South-East Asian countries indicates that a huge amount of foreign exchange can be earned by providing the right policy, environment and infrastructure for the growth of cruise shipping.
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