The Port Network Authority of the Ionian Sea has awarded Global Ports Holding (GPH) a 20-year concession to manage cruise passenger services at Taranto, Italy.
Taranto’s cruise port infrastructure is currently undergoing a state funded, about €28 mill investment programme, which includes the building of a new cruise terminal, expected to be completed by the end of 2020.
GPH and the port authority are currently working on the terms of a concession agreement. Following the successful execution of a concession agreement, GPH will manage the cruise port operations in Taranto. The concession is expected to start in the first quarter of next year.
In 2019, Taranto welcomed around 9,000 cruise passengers, with a pre Covid-19 forecast of over 14,000 passengers in 2020.
In another move, GPH’s partner Baleària Group has been awarded a 35-year concession to operate the ferry and cruise port of Valencia (pictured), with a 15-year extension option.
As part of this agreement, GPH will operate and manage Valencia Cruise Port throughout the period. The stakeholders will now work together to conclude the agreement, full closure and commencement of which is also expected in 1Q21.
Under the terms of this agreement, Baleària will invest up to $37 mill in the port infrastructure, including two new terminals, as well as investment in ferry piers, car parking and retail and F&B areas.
Operating 19 cruise ports in 13 countries, GPH said that it will bring its expertise to the project and its commitment to a more sustainable cruise offering with less environmental impact.
The new terminals will set a new benchmark for sustainability in the passenger transport industry, producing 100% of their electricity needs from their own renewable energy source’s (photovoltaic, wind, renewable hydrogen and biofuel), with all the waste generated being recycled.
In 2019, Valencia received 203 cruise calls and welcomed about 435,00 cruise passengers, with a pre Covid-19 forecast of over 500,000 passengers in 2020.
Emre Sayin, GPH CEO, said: “We are very grateful to Valencia Port Authority for placing their trust in GPH as the operator of Valencia Cruise Port. The project presented by our partners, Baleària Group, in collaboration with GPH, will set a new benchmark for excellence and sustainability in the passenger transport industry.
“Valencia Cruise Port is an important addition to our cruise port network, further strengthening our presence and capabilities in Iberia and the West Med. We very much look forward to growing cruise passenger volumes in Valencia in a sustainable and responsible way,” he said.