13 December 2012
South African state company Transnet has given the go-ahead for a dedicated berthing terminal for cruise liners in Table Bay Harbour, Cape Town, it was reported on Tuesday.
Ports authority spokesman Coen Birkenstock told the Cape Times that the new terminal would be completed within the next two years and would feature an arrivals and departures facility and restrooms.
From next month, the authority would finalise the process of identifying suitable investors and operators.
Birkenstock said it would possibly encourage more international cruise liner operators to include Cape Town on their itineraries.
Since January, liners have been required to berth in the Duncan Dock because the Home Affairs Department banned liners exceeding 200 metres in length from berthing at the V&A Waterfront, citing safety concerns.
Shipping agents and tourism officials reportedly felt Duncan Dock put Cape Town in a bad light, because it was an inconvenience and unfriendly to well-heeled travellers.
According to Western Cape Economic Development MEC Alan Winde, 19 visiting cruise liners brought about 11 444 passengers to the province last year.
Hinde welcomed the authority’s decision, which he said would potentially attract more visitors.