|Photo by Freeimages.com/Steve Wenzel|
Carnival Corporation has announced it has formed a new joint venture in China to launch a multi-ship domestic cruise brand aimed at the Chinese market. The new brand is part of a partnership with China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) and China Investment Corporation (CIC).
The new brand is the latest venture from a major cruise line in China. Recently, Carnival Corp.'s Carnival Cruise Line brand said that it would begin cruise operations in China in spring 2017 with one vessel based in the country year-round. Golden Princess and a new ship, Majestic Princess, from Princess Cruises and Costa Fortuna from Costa Cruises are also set to begin sailing in the country in 2016. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH) recently announced that it would launch a purpose-built ship for the Chinese cruise market in 2017, and Royal Caribbean's Quantum of the Seas began homeporting in Shanghai this past June.
In a release announcing the new brand Carnival Corp. said that it expects China to eventually become the largest cruise market in the world.
Under the structure of the new joint venture, Carnival Corporation & plc and CSSC, the largest shipbuilder in China, plan to purchase and operate cruise ships as part of what is expected to be the first multi-ship fleet sailing for a domestic Chinese cruise brand. Specific fleet details will be announced at a later date, but potential plans could include the purchase of both new and existing cruise ships to homeport in China.