Access channels to three cruise harbors in Indonesia will be dredged this year to meet international demand from large cruise ship companies, said Rizki Handayani Mustafa, Director for MICE and Special Interest Promotion at the Ministry for Tourism and Creative Economy recently.
The decision to give priority to development of the three harbors was agreed between the Ministry for Tourism and Creative Economy, the Ministry for Communications (Directorate for Harbors and Dredging) and PT Pelabuhan Indonesia II (Pelindo II) in charge of harbor management, reports Kompas daily.
The three harbors are Benoa harbor in south Bali, Tanjung Perak, the harbor of Surabaya, capital of East Java and the Tanjung Emas harbor of Semarang, capital of Central Java. The two latter are located on the northern coast of the island of Java. Cruises tie up in Semarang to allow passengers to visit the world famous Borobudur temple, while Surabaya is the starting point for tours to the amazing Bromo crater.
The channels will be dredged 12 meters deep to be on par with international standard harbors and to allow large cruise ships tie up sail alongside, said Rizki Handayani. Each of these cruise ships carry between 2,000 to 6,000 passengers each, who will normally spend around US$ 100 per day. In addition to ships’ needs for foodstuffs, water and other supplies, the arrival of cruise ships to East and Central Java will certainly boost regional economy.
Director of Pelindo II, Djarwo Surjanto supports the works on the harbors, adding that with the arrival of larger cruise ships he hopes that related government institutions like Immigration and Quarantine will provide equal support services to the ships.
Dredging of the three harbors requires around Rp. 120 billion.
Last year, the mv. Legend of the Seas, carrying 3000 tourists from Australia, Singapore, the USA, England and Germany with approximately 1000 crew on board was the first of the world's large cruise ships to enter Indonesia, making it through the narrow channel, to lay alongside the Benoa pier on 16 January 2012.
This is the largest cruise ship that has sailed into Indonesian waters and has tied at the Benoa pier, said Sapta Nirwandar, Vice-Minister for Tourism and Creative Economy.
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