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Cruise ship MS Amera called to Odesa port

Passenger liner MS AMERA moored to the 15th berth of Odesa port today at 7.30 am. This is the first call to our city of a foreign cruise ship since June 2017.

 

The motor vessel arrived from Constanta. It has 750 tourists on board mainly from Germany, as well as the United States and EU countries. At the berth, 11 comfortable buses were waited for the foreign guests and provided an extensive excursion program around the city.

 

AMERA makes a large cruise on the Mediterranean and the Black Seas, which includes Nice, Syracuse, Piraeus, Nessebar, Constanta, Odesa, Istanbul, Chesmu, Santorini, Durres, Split and will end in Trieste.

 

AMERA is the fourth name of this vessel. Until 2019, the liner has been named PRINSENDAM, and ROYAL VIKING SUN and SEABOURN SUN even earlier. The passenger liner entered Odesa under all these names. In April 2012, it visited Odesa last time under the name PRINSENDAM.

 

The vessel became most famous under the first name ROYAL VIKING SUN: 7 times the ship was recognized as the ‘Best Cruise Ship’ (according to the Berlitz Guide classification)

The liner was built in Finland in 1988. It sails under the flag of the Bahamas.

 

Its length is 205 meters. Nine passenger decks are capable of accommodating 835. The crew consists of 440 people.

 

The departure of MS AMERA to Istanbul is scheduled for 18:00.

 

The previous call of a foreign liner to Odesa port took place 29 months ago, in June 2017. It was a small expeditionary vessel ISLAND SKY.

 

Press Service of Odesa Sea Ports Authority

 

 

 

 

 

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MedCruise General Assembly: Cruise companies are still interested in calling to the Black Sea region and Odesa in particular

From 1 to 4, October 2019, Antibes (France) was holding the next General Assembly of the MedCruise, Association of Mediterranean ports and adjacent seas. Being a member of this international cruise infrastructure organization, Odesa port took part in the event. The enterprise was represented by Julia Strikh, the head of the tourism and European integration department of port Authority.

 

‘Participation in the events held by MedCruise is very important for us,’ J. Strikh stated. “This is an opportunity to negotiate in B2B format with leading cruise business players and the international press representatives specializing in this issue. Our first priority is to cover the activities of the Black Sea regionworking group aimed at restoring cruise tourism on the Black Sea as much as possible, to talk about the tourist attractiveness of Odesa, new routes and excursion programs of our city. According to representatives of the cruise business, interest in the Black Sea region and Odesa, particularly, remains.

 

The representative of Odesa port held about 15 meetings with journalists of the international press and top managers of cruise companies. In particular, B2B meetings were conducted with representatives of such international publications as International Cruise & Ferry Review, Cruise Times, Seatrade Cruise Review, Cruise Insight, The Cruise Diaries, Cruise News Media Group, Cruise Business Review. It was managed to agree on 7 free publications on the activities of the Black Sea working group, the first results, namely those planned for 2020-2021 calls at the Black Sea ports, as well as the tourist attractiveness of Odesa on the Internet or in print media. Such publications are one of the activity areas of the Black Sea working group, as they allow not only to provide information about the Black Sea ports, but also to popularize the cities of the region.

 

Besides, meetings with representatives of cruise companies were also held in the B2B format. During these meetings, top managers of such companies as Holland America Line, TUI Cruises, Carnival Corp. expressed their position: they are waiting for the situation after the opening of a new passenger terminal in Istanbul in 2020. The opening of the terminal in Istanbul, which is the gateway and base port for many cruise companies on the Black Sea, will serve as a boost for passenger liners to return to this region, including Odesa.

 

For instance, Carnival Corporation representatives stated that due to adverse events in Istanbul and the geopolitical situation in Ukraine, the vessels of the companies included in the corporation were not going to return to the Black Sea region until 2021. Seabourn company must be the first to make calls.

 

MSC Vice President announced the planned expansion of the fleet until 2023, which should be replenished with small vessels capable of unchallenged passing through the Bosphorus Strait.

 

Ponant, which had submitted two applications for calling at Odesa port in 2020 and two in 2021, is going to continue including Odesa port along with other ports of the Black Sea region in tourist itineraries since about 40 percent of total consumer demand falls on the Black Sea region.

 

Scenic Luxury Cruises Development Manager said that, finally, the company was able to make a schedule of calls for the coming years. So, in 2022, from 1 to 2 calls to Odesa port are planned.

 

In general, almost all representatives of the cruise companies noted the positive tendency of the gradual return of ‘white ships’ to the ports of the Black Sea region.

 

Press Service of Odesa Sea Ports Authority

 

 

 

 

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ODESA SEA PORT: in 2021 and 2022, apart from the scheduled ship calls, additional cruise vessels are expected in the port

On 11-13 of September, Seatrade Europe 2019, the annual international exhibition of the cruise industry was held in Hamburg (Germany). Odesa Sea Port Authority was represented at this status event by Igor Panchenko, head of the cruise infrastructure and external relations service and Julia Strikh, head of tourism and European integration department, as well as Ekaterina Leshcheva, head of the Tourist Information Center of Odesa.

 

Thanks to the joint participation in the exhibition of employees of the State Enterprise ‘USPA’ and the head of the city institute, it was possible to provide representatives of cruise companies with comprehensive information about the security situation in the Black Sea region and Odesa. Potential partners were interested in the technical characteristics of the passenger terminals of Odesa, Constanta, Varna, Burgas and coastal tourism services, the amount of port charges and other issues.

 

- Each participation of Odesa Sea Port Authority in the events of the cruise industry is another step on the difficult path of restoring cruise shipping in the Black Sea region and, in particular, to the Odesa port. And this intense and consistent work is producing results. This time, the outcome of the talks in Hamburg exceeded all expectations. The Odesa delegates held about 12 meetings with representatives of various departments of the following cruise lines: Costa Cruises, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Holland America Line, Silversea Cruises, Noble Caledonia, and others. The negotiations made it possible for us to expect additional 6 ship calls besides the announced 11 calls in 2021, and 2 additional calls in 2022, - Igor Tkachuk, General Manager of Odesa Sea Port Authority commented the Odesa delegates visiting the Seatrade Europe 2019 exhibition.

 

According to the talks, the forecasts for the coming years are favorable. Many world-famous companies announced their return to the Black Sea region, in particular to Odesa, in 2021 and 2022. For example, Silversea Cruises are going to return to Odesa in 2021 (the vessel Silver Shadow). Christopher Allan, Royal Caribbean's Itinerary Planning Director said that apart from four (2 in 2020 and 2 in 2021) announced ship calls, another 3 additional Azamara Cruises were expected in 2021, as well as a possible call of Celebrity Cruises in 2022. James Buchanan, head of ground operations of Noble Caledonia announced the company’s return to the Black Sea region since 2021 (Caledonian Sky liner).

 

The companies that are not planning to call at the port of Odesa (Holland America Line, Celestyal Cruises) during the next 2 years were provided with all the information of interest, including discounts on port charges and the tourist potential of Odesa.

 

The representatives of the port Authority admit interest of the cruise companies in returning to the Black Sea region and the Odesa port, in particular, as well as the positive tendency of the increasing demand of cruise passengers on visiting the Black Sea ports.

 

Press Service of Odesa Sea Port Authority

 

 

 

 

 

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Odesa port initiates the launch of a joint with the Сity Council coordinating body to formulate a cruise tourism development strategy

Odesa returns to Europe's cruise hub club. Today, 11 requests to visit the maritime capital of Ukraine by passenger ships under the foreign flag for 2020 and 10 applications for 2021 have been received. This breakthrough against the background of last year's zero indicators and two requests for 2019 was the result of the active cooperation of Odesa Sea Port Authority with the world`s largest Cruise Port Association Medcruise and Black Sea Working Group Meeting partners. At the same time, at the local level, the coordination of the port and the city authorities` efforts in the development of cruise tourism have sporadic character. Transfer these contacts into the collaborative system work area opens up opportunities to serve passengers of ‘white steamers’ in Odesa at a new level. This was discussed at the working meeting with the port representatives and executive committee of the Odesa City Council yesterday, 22 August.

 

Tatyana Markova, the director of the Department of Culture and Tourism and Alexander Ilko, the director of the Department of Transport, Communications, and Traffic, represented the City Council in the discussion. Odesa Sea Port Authority was represented by Ruslan Sakhautdinov, Deputy General Manager on operation services of Port Authority, Ihor Panchenko, Head of Cruise Infrastructure and External Relations Services, Yuliia Strikh, Head of Tourism and European Integration Department.

 

- In order to bring back the big cruise ships to Odesa, we actively use the tools of the negotiation platforms of the largest tourist forums in Europe and the United States, including the international Cruise Shipping Miami International Exhibition and Conference and The General Assemblies of the Medcruise Association, - states R. Sakhautdinov. — At the same time, our negotiations with cruise line operators could be more effective if a representative of the Odesa City Council took part in them. After all, addressing many cruise ship onshore issues belongs to the competence of the city government. This concerns the organization of the excursion buses movement in the conditions of dense car traffic, providing comfortable conditions for physically disabled tourists movement in the city streets and so on. And moreover, in the leading cruise ports of Europe port authorities and city authorities jointly create a tourism development strategy …

 

Among other things, the working meeting participants discussed the issues of tourist coastal services, announced by representatives of the maritime travel industry at 54th General Assembly of Medcruise (May 2019, Kusadasi, Turkey). In particular, the meeting concerned the improving of the public transport system, launching proper social structure for tourists (sanitary areas, medical assistance, transferring with children), enhancing public safety at the historic center during cruise vessel calls in the harbor. Cruise companies also want to get up-to-date marketing forwarding with tourist products at the local level.

 

- A program of tourism development in Odesa launched a year ago was introduced a new destination, cruise tourism, - noted T. Markova – So, obviously, today we are negotiating with the Port about cooperation in this industry. We hope that representative of the City Council and other representatives of the port will be proxy to our partners the cultural and historical heritage and tourist routes of our city at the next Medcruise General Assembly. We also welcomed the news of the establishment of the permanent working group on the initiative of Odesa Port, which will be participated by representatives of Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria, and Turkey. I think we could also be involved in the marketing practices of this body. Moreover, we have something to present: for the last years the Executive Committee of the City Council has made a real breakthrough in tourist infrastructure arrangements, we participate in 33 international tourism exhibitions, we have a large number of high-quality promotional materials.

 

In his turn, O. Ilko stated that the creation of the relationship between the City Council and the state enterprise represented by Odesa Sea Port Authority will greatly facilitate the work of the city Department of Transportation aimed at preventing technological disruptions during cruise tourists servicing in the historical center of Odesa.

 

At the end of the meeting, the participants discussed the draft of Memorandum of launching the joint coordinating development strategies body of cruise tourism in Odesa by port Authority and the Executive Committee. After signing the document, the parties will be capable of proceeding to a joint marketing action plan. 

 

Press Service of Odesa Sea Port Authority

 

 

 

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Odesa port was awarded the prestigious award of the Mediterranean cruise community

On June 25, as part of the traditional Shipping Week in Genoa, there was the first ceremony of the Mare Nostrum MedCruise Awards, an international award for shipping lines, ports, travel agents and tour operators, industry media, and others that made a significant contribution to the development of the cruise industry in the countries of the Mediterranean basin. The ceremony took place in one of the most beautiful buildings of the Italian city, Palazzo Doria-Tursi, built in the 16th century, which has been the headquarters of the municipality of Genoa.

 

Selection of nominees, the voting procedure and the award ceremony for the winners of the rating were organized by the world's largest Association of cruise shipping ports in the Mediterranean and adjacent seas, MedCruise, together with the port authorities of Genoa and Savona and the editors of Grimaldi Magazine Mare Nostrum.

 

Winners in 19 nominations were selected for the first awards ceremony of the Mediterranean Cruise Oscar for achievements in 2018, when the number of cruise tourists in the region exceeded 25 million. The title of laureate in the nomination ‘The Best Port of the Black Sea Region’ was awarded to the port of Odesa by a panel of authoritative jury.

 

Igor Tkachuk, the General Manager of Odesa Sea Port Authority, called the victory in the rating ‘reward for resistance’.

 

‘You know that in recent years, due to the geopolitical reasons, the number of cruise ship calls to Odesa Sea Port under foreign flag has begun to decline rapidly and last year this figure dropped to zero,” I. Tkachuk comments. - But all these years we have not given up and have made efforts to return the white ships to the Black Sea. First of all, this is a systematic work within the MedCruise Association. Twice a year, our representatives hold a series of meetings and talks with cruise companies during the Association's General Assemblies. We also provide the promotion of the tourist brand of Ukraine at the main international cruise forum Seatrade Cruise Global. Furthermore, the Odesa Sea Port Authority took the initiative to create an international working group of the representatives of the Black Sea cruise ports, which is actively working with cruise companies and others, informing them about the development of cruise infrastructure in the region, the safety situation and so on. The reward we received in Genoa is essentially the support of our work and at the same time, it is a signal to the market that the situation in the region has stabilized and cruise companies can include Ukrainian ports to the itinerary plan…


In order to confirm his words about the stabilization of the safety situation, I. Tkachuk gave two figures: by 2020, Odesa Sea Port had already received 11 requests for ship calls of cruise liners under a foreign flag and 8 applications had been received for the 2021 season.

 

Receiving the Mare Nostrum Award in one of the most beautiful ceremonial halls of Genoa, Ruslan Sakhautdinov, Deputy General Manager of Odesa Sea Port Authority, warmly thanked the President of the MedCruise Association, Mr. Airam Diaz Pastor, and the Secretary General of the Association, Mr. Jordi Caballe, for supporting the efforts of the Black Sea ports to restore cruise shipping in the region. This support, in particular, was expressed by the organization of international conferences MedCruise Black Sea Working Group Meeting, which were held in October last year in Odesa and in February of this year in Constanta, Romania.

 

In April of this year, at the exhibition-conference Seatrade Cruise Global in Miami (USA), also with the support of MedCruise, the ports of Odesa, Constanta, Varna and Burgas jointly presented the tourist potential of the northwestern part of the Black Sea region.

 

At the end of his speech, a representative of Odesa Sea Port Authority said words of gratitude to the cruise companies that return to the Black Sea and expressed appreciation to journalists from specialized media who objectively cover the situation in the Black Sea region. The words of gratitude for the warm welcome were also addressed to the municipality of Genoa, the Italian city, which Odessa has been linked with by ties of fraternal relations since 1957.

 

Background:

The Association of Mediterranean Cruise Ports and adjacent seas MedCruise was founded in 1996. Today it is the world's largest association of ports, shipping companies, tour operators and other structures operating in the cruise tourism industry. This brand comprises more than 70 ports of the Mediterranean, Black and Red Seas, the Middle Atlantic and 35 international corporations (107 members in total). The port of Odessa renewed its membership in the Association in 2008.


Palazzo Doria-Tursi (Palazzo Niccolo Grimaldi) was one of three palaces, the apartments of which were provided only to the most high-ranking guests of Genoa, who came with official visits, the popes, kings and emperors. The building is located in the center of Genoa at Via Garibaldi, 9. 2006, in July, this palace, along with another 41st palazzo, was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List (Wikipedia).

 

Press office of Odesa Sea Port Authority

 

 

 

 

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"Princess Dnipro" called at the port of Odessa a day ahead of the schedule and was welcomed with the orchestra

At the sea port of Odessa you can observe an unusual picture: two awesome cruise riverboat ships are moored on one berth with pilothouses to each other. The first liner, the m/v “Vіkіng Sіneus”, has been in the harbor since May 24. The second one of the same type “Princess Dnipro” has entered the port today, May 28. The tourists from the "Princess Dnipro" were welcomed with incendiary brass band music.

 

According to the company that performs the functions of a travel agent, the m/v "Princess Dnipro" entered the port of Odessa a day ahead of the schedule.

 

“It is the storm warning for the Vilkovo region what influenced the schedule,” explained Konstantin Lichikaki, the director of the company London Sky. – Due to this fact, the cruise route was slightly corrected. The ship went to Odessa, avoiding Kiliia.

 

The director of the company stated that the liner “Princess Dnipro” is currently making the first voyage in the navigation of 2019 on the route “Kiev – Dnepropetrovsk – Zaporozhye – Kherson – Kiliia – Odessa”. The citizens of Norway, Britain, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Israel are dominated tourists among the passengers. There are 227 tourists in total.

- This is close to the maximum capacity of the vessel (240 people) which indicates the growing popularity of the cruise, - said K. Lichikaki. - There are also no problems with the occupancy of the following Princess cruises. In total 10 cruises are planned for the current season on the route between Kiev and Kiliia.

 

The change in schedule caused by the weather will not affect the cultural program for the Princess passengers. They will go to Kiliia by buses. Then they will have a tour of Odessa, visit the play at the Odessa Opera and Ballet Theater and go to the trip to Belgorod-Dniester Fortress. The motor vessel moorage in the Odessa port will continue until May 31.

 

Press Service of the Odessa Sea Port Authority

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The 2019 cruise season in the port of Odessa started with the visit of the world's largest operator of river cruise ships (photo-report)

Today, May 24, at 9:00 am, VIKING SINEUS, the passenger ship with the tourists on board, has moored at the berth of the Odessa Port Passenger Terminal. The river-sea type liner performs the first Dnieper-Black Sea cruise in this season. The ship arrived in the sea capital of Ukraine with 187 passengers. All of them are the US citizens. In the morning, the tourists went on a sightseeing bus tour “Panorama of Odessa”, an excursion “Odessa Catacombs” is planned for the afternoon, and in the evening, the tourists will enjoy an eventful cultural program.

 

Igor Tkachuk, the head of the port Authority stated: ‘The ship has called and moored exactly as scheduled – right on time. We regard this as a good sign for the entire season of servicing river liners. This year, two motor vessels, the Viking Sineus and the Princess of the Dnieper are sailing on the Dnieper-Black sea cruise routes. According to the schedule, we are going to serve 15 ship calls from May till September. This is the level of the last year’.

 

According to unofficial information, the representatives of the Viking Cruises company in Basel (Switzerland) have arrived to Odessa together with tourists on the VIKING SINEUS motor vessel. The purpose of their trip is a special inspection: to ensure that the standards of passenger service on the ship correspond to the high level of the company, as well as ‘to see through the tourists` eyes’ at the port service and the state of the tourist infrastructure in the city, etc.

 

Viking Cruises company was founded in 1997 as a river cruise operator in Europe. In the early 2000s, after actively entering the American market, it has received the status of the “Leading World River Cruise Line”. Today, Viking Сruises operates a huge fleet of 62 river and 6 ocean liners. The company's river cruises sail along the rivers of Europe, the Volga, the Dnieper, the Nile, the Yangtze and the Mekong. In particular, last season, the m/v VIKING SINEUS made 14 cruises along the Dnieper between Kiev and Odessa calling at Kherson, Zaporozhye, Dnieper and Kremenchug.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Port of Odessa jointly with colleagues from the Black Sea Working Group presented the Black Sea region’s potential at the annual world-wide exhibition - conference dedicated to the cruise industry in Miami

According to the reports of Odesa branch of the State Enterprise ‘Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority’ (“OB SE USPA”), a working group of Black Sea ports established last year being interested in the revival of cruise shipping in the Black Sea, has already formed a united team to participate this year in one of the main events of the world's cruise industry - the annual Seatrade Cruise Global Exhibition, which usually takes place in Miami (USA). On April 8-11, at the exhibition, the opportunities for the development of the Black Sea cruise shipping were presented jointly by Odesa, Constanta, Varna and Burgas.

 

Ihor Tkachuk, the General manager of OB SE USPA’ stated that during the exhibition the representatives of the Odesa port managed to negotiate with top managers of leading cruise companies that until recently have directed their cruise ships routes to the north of the Bosporus and in particular to Odessa.

 

‘Our specialists met with the heads and managers of cruise route planning of  such well-known companies as American Royal Caribbean, Italian Costa Crosiere, British Noble Caledonia, startup cruise line - Virgin Voyages and some others,’ said I. Tkachuk. — These meetings showed the readiness of cruise market operators to include the Black Sea geographical segment in the Mediterranean cruises plans for 2020-2021 ... In general, the purpose of the exhibition participation of Ukrainians was to convince our partners of security of the Black Sea region for the ‘white steamers’ calls and to present the best tourist destinations features of the region.

 

As it was reported, last year on October 17, the Authority of Odesa sea port initiated an international conference «MedCruise Black Sea Working Group Meeting» in the Black Sea capital of Ukraine. The participants discussed the issues of the revival of cruise shipping to the Black Sea.

 

The meeting was attended by the Deputy Minister of Infrastructure Yuriy Lavrenyuk, acting CEO of the «USPA» Rayvis Vetskagans and Airam Diaz Pastor - the president of the world's biggest association of the Mediterranean and adjoining (including Black Sea) ports «MedCruise».

 

In addition,

 

From 2007 to 2013 the number of cruise liners visiting the port of Odesa increased from 69 to 106 vessels for annual navigation. Since 2014 when Russia annexed the Crimea and warfare began in the Donbass, this rate has been falling steadily and reached zero in 2018. For the 2019 season two applications are submitted. Thus, on May 10, the AEGEAN ODYSSEY (LOA of 145 m, passenger capacity of 380 people, the flag of Malta) is going to open the cruise navigation in the port of Odessa. Almost half a year later, on October 30, the AMERA motor ship (LOA of 205 m, passenger capacity of 800 people, the flag of the Bahamas) is going to visit the sea capital of Ukraine. The mentioned vessels are operated by the Greek company Aegean Experience Maritime Co Ltd and the German Phoenix Reisen.

 

Press service of the Odessa Sea Port Authority 

 

 

 

 

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Representatives of the port of Odesa took part in the Second Meeting of the «MedCruise» Working Group for the Black Sea Region

The MedCruise Black Sea Working Group Meeting was held last Friday on the 2nd of February at the headquarters of the National Company Maritime Ports administration S.A. Constanta. The meeting was attended by representatives of administrations of the ports Burgas, Varna, Odesa and Istanbul, as well as the general secretary of the MedCruise Association, Jordi Caballe.

 

According to the data of Odesa Sea Port Authority representatives (Odesa branch SE “USPA”), the participants discussed the status of implementation of the Action Plan for the Black Sea Ports, aimed at returning cruise tourism to the Black Sea region, under the Minutes of the first meeting of the working group, which took place in Odessa on the 17th of October, 2018. In particular, “participants focused on the marketing strategy of the ports for 2019-2021, new investments in the field of cruise tourism in the Black Sea Region, news announced by cruise companies to the Black Sea region”, etc. A separate issue on the agenda was the proposals of the parties to jointly participate in the most significant event of the international industry of sea travel - the annual exhibition and conference «Seatrade Cruise Global», which will traditionally be held this year in Miami, USA in April.

 

The Black Sea Working Group within the framework of the Association “Medcruise” was established relatively recently by the initiative of the port of Odesa, however, today we can discuss the first results of its activities, - commented Igor Tkachuk, general manager of Odesa branch of SE «USPA».

 

- Large passenger capacity cruise liners are already announcing their entry into the Black Sea in the upcoming three years. Thus, for 2019 the Greek and German cruise lines included Odesa in the cruise routes on the AEGEAN ODYSSEY and AMERA ships, in 2020 we expect 10 ship calls, in 2021 - 4 and up to now we have received one application for 2022. It should be noted that the cruise liners of world famous tour operators such as Phoenix Reisen, Azamara Club Cruises, Crystal Cruises are returning to Odesa ...

 

Reference: MedCruise Mediterranean Cruise Ports Association was founded in 1996. Today it is the world's largest association of ports, shipping companies, tour operators and other structures operating in the cruise tourism industry. More than 70 ports of the Mediterranean, Black and Red Seas, the Middle Atlantic and 35 international companies (107 members in total) act under its name. The port of Odesa has resumed membership in this association since 2008.

 

Press Service of the Administration of the Odessa Sea Port

 

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MedCruise launches new Black Sea Working Group in Odessa

MedCruise launched a Working Group to promote cruising in the Black Sea at a meeting in Odessa today.

 

President Airam Diaz Pastor and recently elected MedCruise Black Sea director Teodor Patrichi together with the Ukrainian deputy minister of infrastructure, the acting head of Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority, the deputy mayor of Odessa and the general manager of Odessa Port presented the new MedCruise Working Group following an Action Plan signed by the ports of Odessa, Varna, Constanta and Burgas during the 52nd MedCruise General Assembly held in Malta in May 2018.

 

This Action Plan highlights the absence of ocean-going cruise ships in the Black Sea in 2017 and the slow return of cruise activity in the region both in recent years and forward to the 2019-2020 cruise seasons.

 

Joint marketing strategy

By creating a unified brand and developing a joint marketing strategy, a plan will be implemented in the coming months to promote the Black Sea as a cruise destination.

‘The launch of this Working Group will have a positive impact on the regional cruise sector and it will bring new opportunities to all MedCruise members from the Black Sea – Port of Odessa, Port of Varna, Port of Constanta, Port of Burgas, Port of Trabzon and Port of Istanbul - as well as the cruise-industry-related-companies that operate in the region,’ Diaz pastor remarked.

 

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The black sea ports decided to join forces and signed the action plan for the nearest three years

Odesa Sea Port Authority put forward an initiative to reunite the Black Sea ports for the development of the joint touristic product for the cruise lines to be offered. This project, supported by MedCruise Black Sea Director Teodor Patrichi was submitted by the Deputy Chief of USPA Odessa branch – Ruslan Sakhautdinov and the Head of Cruise Infrastructure and External Relations Service – Oleh Fetisenko to the participants of the 52nd General Assembly of MedCruise that was held in Valetta (Malta).

 

The project was supported by the representatives of Constantza Port (Romania), Varna and Burgas (Bulgaria). As a result the working group was established, the participants of which have signed the Action plan for the nearest three years being certified by the President of MedCruise Airam Diaz Pastor. The plan includes elaborating a letter addressing the targeted cruise lines, which will announce that there are no negative impact events in the Black Sea that would affect the cruise vessels. Besides, this letter will state that the cruise infrastructure of the signing ports is ready to support any cruise vessel that would be able to enter the Black Sea. In 2020 -2021the cruise companies are planning to return to the Black Sea region.  

 

It should be reminded that the Black Sea region was the most affected by the war in the East of our country as well as by the situation in Turkey. As a result almost all the cruise calls were cancelled.

 

Nevertheless, despite the absence of cruise liners, Odessa Sea Port Authority has modernized the Marine station by refurbishing the inner premises, rebuilding the kinetic frontage which has no analogue in Ukraine. The passenger terminal provides a high level of security. Importantly, that in comparison with the last year the number of port calls of sea-river vessels has increased. This type of vessels is in demand with Americans, Germans, Swiss. As noted by the specialists, it’s a positive signal for the cruise calls renewal to the Port of Odessa.

 

- We initiated the integration of all the Black Sea Ports for the development of the joint touristic product enable to renew the cruise shipping in the Black Sea region. It has been shown that there is no profit for the cruise lines to call just into the Port of Odessa, they tend to call into several ports. Passengers, in turn, are interested in visiting not only Odessa but the whole region. Encouragingly, the representatives of Varna, Costantza and Burgas Ports have supported us. The joint document – Action plan was signed. Taking into account that our port was an initiator of joining forces of all the Black Sea ports, the document states that an organizational meeting will be held in Odessa in September 2018 in order to establish the program and to develop a mechanism for cooperation. – commented on the chief of Odessa Sea Port Authority Igor Tkachuk.

 

- The fact that the Black Sea region is interesting for the cruise lines, - noted R. Sakhautdinov indicates the decision of the Board of the Association that the 53rd MedCruise General Assembly, scheduled for 2021, will be held in Varna. Such an important event will take place in the cities of the Black Sea for the second time: in 2016 the 48th MedCruise General Assembly was held in Odessa.

 

REFERENCE. MedCruise is the largest association in the world, uniting the cruise ports of the Mediterranean and its adjoining seas, as well as companies that are policy makers on the cruise market. Every year MedCruise is enlarged with new members. So, according to the latest data for 2017, about the 15 ports were joined to the association.

 

Press-service of Оdessa sea port authority

 

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