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Published on : Sunday, December 1, 2013
Kuching has been recognized as one of ports with potential for cruise tourism development by the Malaysia Cruise Council, which also identified cruise tourism as one of the Tourism National Key Economic Areas (NKEA) – Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) by Pemandu.
Sarawak needs RM360 million to dredge Sarawak River to enable Kuching Port Authority to accommodate larger cruise ships, taking advantage of the expected increase in cruise tourism in Malaysia and the Asia Pacific region.
Currently, only small and medium cruise ships can berth at Kuching Port Authority.
Minister of Tourism Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg said that the cruise tourism was one of the fastest budding tourism segments in US, Europe, and now in the Asia-Pacific Region, which accounts for 18 per cent of the global cruise market. The state was looking into the feasibility of developing its own deep sea ports and dedicated cruise facilities in compliance with the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code and that the proposed study on the Lundu-Sematan Coastal Development Area Master Plan was expected to address the matter.