Global Ports Holding Begins Operations at Saint Lucia Port

St. Lucia Ribbon Cutting

Global Ports Holding celebrated the start of cruise management services at Port Castries by Saint Lucia Cruise Port (SLCP) with the Government of Saint Lucia.

According to a statement, the start was marked by a special ceremony at the Northern Wharf of the port and was attended by government dignitaries and key port partners.

Mehmet Kutman, Chairman and CEO of Global Ports Holding, said: “We are honored to be here on this momentous occasion and to partner with the Government of Saint Lucia to mark the commencement of our cruise port management services. We want to thank Prime Minister Philip Pierre, Deputy Prime Minister Dr. Ernest Hilaire, Minister Stephenson King and the entire government team for their commitment and cooperation in bringing this moment to fruition.”

“We would be remiss in not thanking all of the stakeholders who participated in the negotiations process and those who helped us to improve our plans by sharing your direct and prompt feedback. Your contributions and support have made it possible for us to be here today.  Through our continued collaboration, this investment in our collective future will surely generate abundant returns for Saint Lucia for many years,” added Kutman.

“We are extremely excited to add Saint Lucia Cruise Port to our global family,” said Mike Maura, Jr. regional director of GPH Americas. “The Eastern Caribbean will play a vital strategic role in the future of our regional growth and Saint Lucia is a destination that is unparalleled. We believe in the potential of the future of cruise tourism here and are very pleased to have added a team of Saint Lucians, led by Lancelot Arnold, to our expanding regional team. The opportunities that we will create here, in partnership with local and industry stakeholders, will uplift the entire country to the benefit of all Saint Lucians.”

Prime Minister Pierre said: “What we have is a new economic arrangement.  We will get the best of both worlds – we let you develop the infrastructure in exchange for a ‘rental’ of the cruise port for 30 years, but you will pay us. You will employ people and you will improve the quality of life of the people of Saint Lucia.  That is what is most important to me.

“We had very tough negotiations, but the end result will benefit the people of Saint Lucia and we are very happy. GPH has my full support. We need you to begin to do the work as soon as possible. The people of Soufriere, Bananes, the Vendors Arcade – we are expecting you to deliver. Welcome to Saint Lucia, thank you, and we hope to have a lasting relationship with you.”

Lancelot Arnold, director of GPH Eastern Caribbean and general manager of Saint Lucia Cruise Port, shared the enthusiasm: “We are immensely proud to officially assume management of cruise operations at Port Castries. Today’s achievement is the result of an exceptional amount of hard work and commitment by many people. We have spent months preparing extensively for this moment and are ready to move full speed ahead. We are fully aligned with all key partners to ensure that we can begin operations with a seamless transfer of service.”

 “Following today’s announcement, our project designs will undergo refinement in collaboration with our stakeholders prior to submission to government for approval. Construction will commence upon receipt of the requisite regulatory permits. Meanwhile, we will establish our offices and continue operation of the cruise port in preparation for the start of the new cruise season in October.”

“Enhancements to the berth at Pointe Seraphine in Castries will assist in reaching our passenger traffic targets by accommodating the world’s largest cruise ships. These days, cruise lines are constructing vessels that are wider and longer than ever before. It’s imperative that we modernize our port infrastructure to welcome these new ships and maintain our competitiveness as a premier cruising destination,” he added.

Deputy Prime Minister Hilaire added: “GPH knows how to get visitors to spend more money in destinations, so [working with] GPH is a natural fit for us.  And in Saint Lucia, we want exactly that. We want more visitors to come in and spend more money. We need to take Saint Lucia to a higher level…and GPH will come in now to assist in creating a higher level of experience [for our visitors].”


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