The Government announced that the BVI is now a Presidential Partner with the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA).
This week, Chairman of the FCCA and Carnival Corporation & plc Micky Arison stated that the Virgin Islands has been a long standing partner of the industry, and that he was thrilled with the agreement which signifies the improvement of many lives and livelihoods.
President of the FCCA, Michele Paige said her association is proud of its past work with the Virgin Islands and is honored that the Territory has again put its faith in the FCCA and the cruise industry.
Ms. Page added, “Through this agreement, FCCA is fully committed to fulfilling individualised initiatives, which focus on assisting the private sector, improving employment, fostering cruise lines’ purchase of local goods and more that will help locals prosper from the economic impact that the industry brings.”
In October, 2022 Deputy Premier and Minister for Communications and Works, Hon. Kye Rymer led a delegation of government officials to Santo Domingo for the FCCA Cruise Conference.
Rymer who is also responsible for ports, said that it was an opportunity to maximise cruise passenger, cruise line and cruise line employee spending, as well as enhance the destination experience and the number of cruise passengers returning as stay-over visitors.
“This collaboration will amplify our cruise tourism reach, improve and develop the services and products we offer for our cruise guests and generate more opportunities for the people of the Virgin Islands in this sector,” Honourable Rymer said at the time.
According to the Business Research & Economic Advisors report “Economic Contribution of Cruise Tourism to the Destination Economies”, the Virgin Islands was a previous FCCA Presidential Partner following the historic Hurricanes Irma and Maria, and worked with the FCCA following the pandemic.
The report states that the Virgin Islands Government has formed this agreement to further grow its economic benefits from cruise tourism, which generated $12.63 million in total cruise tourism expenditures, in addition to $4.33 million in total employee wage income, during the 2017/2018 cruise year (which was impacted by the historic hurricane season)
Through the agreement, FCCA will not only guide the Virgin Islands government on enhancing their product and increasing cruise calls, but also will facilitate new experiences to offer cruise companies and collaborate with the local private sector to maximise any opportunities.