Full steam ahead for Carnival cruising in WA

Gary AdsheadThe West Australian
VideoCarnival Australia will use Fremantle and Broome during the peak season.

Cruise ships will berth in Broome for longer after the McGowan Government committed $7 million to dredge and make the port safer.

The world’s largest cruise line company P&O, which owns Carnival Australia, has praised the decision and committed to keeping Fremantle as a home port and deploying its 2000-guest ship Sun Princess there next year.

“Cruising is incredibly important to the WA economy,” Premier Mark McGowan said.

“Carnival had decided to pull out of home porting in Fremantle because some of the infrastructure issues in WA ports hadn’t been dealt with and there had been no action with the previous government.”

WA Premier Mark McGowan says the government is committed to fixing issues at Broome Port.
Camera IconWA Premier Mark McGowan says the government is committed to fixing issues at Broome Port. Credit: Simon Santi/The West Australian

The major problem was berthing in Broome because of tidal issues and large rocks under-water in the port that restricted the time ships could arrive and depart safely.

Tourism Minister Paul Papalia said the Government was also dealing with tensioning units at Geraldton port.

In May, Carnival announced its visits to WA were at risk because of the infrastructure issues. The company’s Australian vice-president, Stuart Allison, said fixing the problems guaranteed five cruises in and out of WA in October and November next year.

Carnival Australia will base it's ship Sun Princess at Fremantle Port.
Camera IconCarnival Australia will base it's ship Sun Princess at Fremantle Port. Credit: Simon Santi/The West Australian

“They will add $8 million to the local economy,” he said.

Mr Allison said that with the dredging work done, Broome would become a marquee port for the company, which put it on a par with the most-favoured destinations worldwide for passengers.

“Broome rates higher for our Princess Cruises guests than any other port in Australia, but the problem with tidal access means they don’t get the best experience,” he said.

“Long term, we hope to bring even larger ships to Australia.”

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