Dubai – Mubahser: DP World has entered into a long-term agreement with MSC Cruises for preferential berthing rights at Mina Rashid in Dubai, strengthening the Geneva, Switzerland-based cruise line’s position as a top passenger cruise operator in the GCC region, according to a statement on Wednesday.
The deal was signed by Gianni Onorato, the line’s CEO, and Mohammed Abdul Aziz Al Mannaei, the CEO of P&O Marinas and executive director, Mina Rashid on board MSC Bellissima, earlier this day.
Launched in February 2019, MSC Bellissima "will make 17 calls and spend 35 days in Dubai during the winter season until March 2020 and sail a range of 7-night itineraries in the Gulf," said a press release on Wednesday.
Commenting on the signing, CEO of MSC Cruises, said, “Our existing commitment to Dubai and the region is clearly demonstrated by MSC Bellissima’s presence this season […] We will strengthen that bond further in winter 2020-2021 when we deploy the highly-innovative MSC Seaview, a ship especially designed to operate in warmer weathers, to serve the region.”
Meanwhile, Al Mannaei added, “The agreement with MSC Cruises for preferential berthing comes at a time when Mina Rashid has been experiencing double-digit increase in tourist traffic.”
MSC Cruises’ plans for the coming year parallel with DP World’s commitment to achieving the Dubai Tourism Strategy goal of welcoming 20 million visitors by 2020.
Moreover, the deal builds on MSC Cruises’ expectations to record over 180,000 passengers in Dubai during this season, with an expected higher number through the length of the new agreement.
The deal also pledges bilateral environmental commitment regarding the cut of the carbon footprint of MSC Cruises’ ships calling in Dubai.