Global Ports Holding (GPH) has announced that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of Antigua and Barbuda to negotiate a long-term concession for cruise port operations for Antigua, including St. John’s cruise port.
The concession will also include certain retail outlets in the project area.
Under the terms of the MoU, both parties have now entered into an exclusive period. GPH is the largest cruise port operator in the world, with numerous cruise ports under its banner in the Mediterranean, as well as Singapore, and an expanding presence in the Caribbean.
During this period GPH and the Government of Antigua and Barbuda will continue to carry out further extensive due diligence and both parties will work towards the successful signing of the concession agreement, according to a statement.
GPH said that it is willing to invest into a material upgrade of the St. John’s cruise port including the construction of a new pier that will allow the port to handle Oasis-class ships, as well as investing in improving the current retail facilities and designing and constructing of new purpose-built retail and food and beverage facilities.
In addition, as part of the proposal, GPH, will establish a charitable foundation to support essential social programs in Antigua and Barbuda.
In 2018, St. John’s cruise port will welcome an estimated 800,000 passengers, and the completion of the new pier and upgrade of the facilities are expected to lead to a passenger number north of one million.
A finalized deal is expected to close in early 2019.
Earlier this year, GPH made its first move in the Caribbean, winning a deal to manage and expand Havana’s cruise port.