The joint ASEAN Declaration on Cruise Tourism led by Singapore, the ASEAN lead coordinator for cruise development, was officially endorsed at the ASEAN Tourism Forum 2018 in Chiang Mai, Thailand, on January 25.
According to the Singapore Tourism Board, its official adoption marks a milestone in ASEAN’s ongoing efforts to transform Southeast Asia into a vibrant cruising destination.
A prepared statement said that the declaration outlines ASEAN’s commitment to further develop cruise tourism in the region by improving the clarity of cruise policies and regulations, efficiency in administration processes, as well as refining business practices to be fairer and more responsible.
“Singapore is proud to announce that the ASEAN states’ collective efforts to develop the ASEAN Declaration for Cruise Tourism have borne fruit. This builds on our previous work such as the inaugural ATF Cruise Dialogue last year and the launch of the Cruise Southeast Asia brand in 2016. It also marks the first major economic deliverable undertaken by Singapore since we assumed the ASEAN Chairmanship for 2018. This will deepen regional connectivity and position ASEAN as a region for seamless economic activity and growing opportunities. We look forward to bringing meaningful benefits to ASEAN businesses and citizens,” said Sim Ann, senior minister of state, ministry of trade and industry.
A rise in cruise tourism is expected to further advance ship deployment, port and destination infrastructure development and spin off benefits for local tourism industries and stakeholders across the region.
Singapore has much to gain from the increased visitors and spending. The city-state has already built up a reputation among travelers as a leading cruising gateway due to its strategic location, modern infrastructure, and air connectivity to Asia-Pacific and the world.
“The future of cruise tourism for both Singapore and the South-east Asian region is bright, with strong potential.”