Attracting Cruise Liners....

Doing away with the archaic norm of charging cruise liners the port dues on the basis of tonnage, the shipping ministry has decided to collect the fee on per passenger basis. This is aimed at making the business easier for cruise operators and the charges will be same across all ports in the country.

In January 2010, world's fifth-largest cruise line operator Louis Cruise Lines had stopped its Cochin-Maldives service barely a month after starting the service citing expensive port charges.

Changes are being made to attract more cruise liners to Indian shores.The government estimates that in the next couple of years the number of cruise liners reaching India will cross 700 against the present figure of only 70-75 annually.

The government has started work to develop five cruise terminals -Mumbai, Chennai, New Mangalore, Goa and Kochi -which will have exclusive berths to handle the cruise liners.

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