Carnival looks to expand China presence with CSSC deal

Carnival Corporation, the world’s largest cruise company, has announced it has signed a memorandum of understanding with the China State Shipbuilding Corporation to explore the possibility of a joint venture aimed at accelerating the development and growth of the Chinese cruise industry.

The Chinese sector is expected to be one of the largest cruise markets in the world, with 4.5 million passengers by 2020, according to the Chinese Ministry of Transport.

Becoming official at a signing ceremony today at the Ninth China Cruise Shipping and International Cruise Expo in Tianjin, the deal outlines the framework for exploration of a partnership between Carnival Corporation and the CSSC that includes the possibility of forming a shipbuilding joint venture.

In turn, that venture that could become a three-way arrangement involving Fincantieri of Italy, the world’s largest cruise ship building company, in support of the Chinese government’s plans to grow the cruising industry in China and meet escalating demand for cruises from Chinese travellers.

As part of the possible shipbuilding joint venture, Carnival Corporation would work closely with CSSC and Fincantieri to help define the first-ever, world-class cruise ship built in China.

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Under the joint venture concept, Carnival Corporation would provide its ship design and shipbuilding expertise to create the vision, definition and overall specifications for the China-built cruise ship.

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