The suspension of cruising will have a “pronounced detrimental effect” on the global economy, industry association Clia has predicted, stressing how the sector “will be an important part of the global economic and societal recovery” post-coronavirus.
Clia said the cruise industry generates more than $150 billion per year in global economic activity and supports more than one million jobs worldwide.
“Cruising touches almost every sector, from transportation and agriculture, to hospitality and tourism, manufacturing and beyond,” it stressed in an update on its work during the Covid-19 crisis issued on 21 April.
Clia described how it had partnered with local and national governments around the world and their health authorities to coordinate efforts during the ongoing suspension of cruise operations worldwide amid the pandemic.
“The top priority for our entire community—including cruise lines, travel agents, ports, destinations, suppliers and beyond—continues to be the health and safety of passengers, crew and the communities in the places we visit,” it said.
Despite some high-profile cases of coronavirus-related incidents onboard its members’ ships, Clia said “the fact remains that the vast majority of more than 270 cruise ships within the Clia-member fleet were not affected by this virus”.
It said that was due in large part to the “aggressive measures” adopted by ocean-going lines in response to Covid-19, which included “rigorous” screening protocols, “enhanced” sanitation measures and the availability of onboard medical care and treatment 24/7.
Clia added it appreciated the “constructive working relationships” with authorities across the globe.
“We will use this time during the suspension of global operations to continue to work with them to achieve our shared objective of going further still in our efforts to protect the health and safety of passengers, crew and public and to support recovery goals for tourism and business sector partners.”