Ramaphosa lauds cruise terminal

President Cyril Ramaphosa. l SUPPLIED

President Cyril Ramaphosa. l SUPPLIED

Published Nov 24, 2023


Durban — President Cyril Ramaphosa said the launch of the Nelson Mandela MSC Cruise Terminal was more than a milestone and an important step in positioning the City of Durban as a premier cruise terminal and a tourism destination.

He was speaking on Wednesday night at the launch of the terminal.

Ramaphosa said this was bigger than just a launching terminal.

“It’s about taking a journey into the life of Nelson Mandela in part,” he said.

Furthermore, he said the terminal had the potential to place Durban alongside Cape Town as a destination of choice for cruise ships.

“The latest cruise season injected an estimated R1.2 billion into the economy of the Western Cape alone and we want to see bigger numbers for here in KwaZulu-Natal. This terminal will play an important part in doing so. As more cruise liners visit this city, more tourists come.

“As part of their homeport itineraries, passengers visit local attractions, shop and spend, and more money is injected into the local economy. As a result, more jobs are created for South Africans and more local businesses are supported, especially small businesses,” said Ramaphosa.

Ramaphosa added that according to the Cruise Lines International Association, the vast majority of cruise passengers were inclined to revisit destinations. So beyond being an investment in brick and mortar, this terminal was also an investment in the future of the South African tourism industry.

Moreover, he said the terminal came about as a result of a public-private partnership entered into between Transnet and Mediterranean Cruise Company (MSC) in 2019.

“This year, a further R30 million has been invested for further expansion of the terminal,” said Ramaphosa.

KZN Premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube said from this terminal, friends and families, lovers and long-time associates would, for centuries to come, arrive and sail away on glorious voyages aboard the MSC cruise liners.

“MSC is today one of the most visible global brands, setting new standards every day as a primary player in the maritime industry and a leader in the blue economy,” she said.

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