A cargo ship docked at the Mombasa port in Kenya

The Port Management Association for Eastern and Southern Africa (PMAESA) in collaboration with Cruise Indian Ocean Association (CIOA), Seychelles Ports Authority and Ministry of Tourism Seychelles has organized a one day cruise tourism workshop to deliberate on strategies to market the region as a cruise destination.

According to a May 31 release by the PMAESA Communications Officer George Sunguh, the event scheduled for June 14, 2016 is expected to attract chief executives of Port Authorities, Tourism Boards, Cruise operators and stakeholders from within Eastern and Southern Africa region as well as the islands on the Western Seaboard of the Indian Ocean.

Key speakers will deliberate on various topical issues during the workshop followed by open forum discussion by the participants, with Mrs Catherine Wairi, Acting Managing Director of Kenya Ports Authority is expected to discuss the Role of Cruise Terminal Design in the Indian Ocean Emerging Markets; her Seychelles counterpart Col Andre Ciseau will take the workshop through Matching the shore excursion experience to the aspirations of cruise passengers, while Mr. Saad Omar who is the chief executive of Djibouti Ports Authority will talk about Trends and challenges faced in marketing and distribution of cruise tourism destinations.

Stories Continues after ad

The President of Inter-cruises shoreside and port services Mr Mark Robinson from Barcelona, Spain, will discuss How Europe and North Africa are leveraging on their vast cruise potential. At the same time Mr. Vukile Khuzwayo, CIOA’s Secretary General will talk about benchmarking of past seatrade conventions while a representative of MSC Cruises will make a presentation on matching the shore excursion experience to the aspirations of cruise passengers. The workshop will be followed on day two, by a brain storming session which is expected to come up with a cruise strategy for the Indian Ocean region.

‘The cruise strategy meeting will be attended exclusively by CIOA and PMAESA members. This meeting will formulate the best means and ways of jointly promoting Eastern and Southern Africa and the Western Seaboard of the Indian Ocean islands as a market to the world as an attractive and worthwhile cruise destination capitalizing on its common strengths and highlighting individual member states’ unique and multifaceted tourist attractiveness,’ the release adds.

The Seychelles Cruise Workshop is in line with the African Union’s Maritime Strategy (AIMS) 2050 which seeks to exploit Africa’s Blue Economy and a follow up to a recent study on the Potential for Cruise Development in the PMAESA region. The study, among other things found out that ‘the efficient promotion of a cruise port as a destination can only be done by bringing all key involved shareholders to work together.’

The Cruise Workshop and the Strategy session will give way to the CIOA and PMAESA Mid Term Board meetings.

The Port Management Association of Eastern and Southern Africa (PMAESA) is an Intergovernmental Organization operating under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) with its Secretariat in Mombasa, Kenya. PMAESA was founded in April 1973 drawing its membership from 25 countries.

The Association has two other sister Associations, covering the North African Ports Association (UAPNA), and the Port Management Association of West and Central Africa (PMAWCA) also created, with similar objectives.