Carnival Corporation has sealed an agreement to launch a new cruise line catering for
the Chinese market.
The cruise group’s joint venture with China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) will see the creation of the CSSC Carnival Cruise Shipping Ltd brand.
The new China-based line plans to operate its own fleet by the end of 2019.
As part of the joint venture, previously announced in 2015, CSSC Carnival Cruise Shipping Ltd also announced it would purchase two existing ships from Carnival’s Costa Group.
The first of these ships, the 2,210-passenger Costa Atlantica, is scheduled to be transferred to the new Chinese cruise line by the end of next year, while the 2,114-passenger Costa Mediterranea will be transferred at a date still to be announced.
CSSC Carnival Cruise Shipping Limited’s two new-build vessels – the first of which is set to be delivered in 2023 - will be constructed in China by the Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding Co. Ltd.
The agreement also gives CSSC Carnival Cruise Shipping Ltd the option to order four additional China-built cruise ships.
Arnold Donald, Carnival Corporation chief executive, said: “The official launch of our cruise joint venture in China is a significant milestone in the strategic development of a strong and sustainable cruise industry in China.
“Together with our partners, we are excited about our ability to launch a new cruise line in China based on existing ships and new China-built cruise ships tailored for Chinese travellers.”
As previously announced in June 2018, Costa Group will also introduce two new vessels specifically designed for the Chinese market – Costa Venezia in spring 2019 and its sister ship in fall 2020.