Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) published its annual European Economic Contribution Report, showing that the cruise industry has once again delivered a great amount of jobs and economic contribution across Europe.
Figures released by CLIA reveal that the cruise industry’s economic output in Europe reached €40.95 billion in 2015, up 2 percent since the previous year, and an all-time high. The direct expenditures generated by the industry reached €16.89 billion, up from €16.6 billion in 2014.
In 2015, the cruise industry also generated more than 10,000 new jobs across Europe, with 360,571 now employed in cruise and cruise-related businesses. Wages and other benefits for European workers reached €11.05 billion.
Even as the cruise industry continues to grow in other regions of the world, Europe remains a vibrant hub for cruising. This trend is supported by three key factors:
Europe represents the world’s second biggest source passenger market – 6.6 million Europeans went on a cruise holiday in 2015, 3 percent more than in 2014.
Europe remains the world’s second most popular cruise destination, second only to the Caribbean. The study showed that 6.12 million passengers embarked on their cruises from European ports in 2015, 4.5 percent more than the previous year.
As the centre of the world’s cruise shipbuilding, European shipyards continue to build the world’s most innovative and largest ships with spending on new builds and maintenance increasing for a fourth year. 48 cruise ships are currently on the order books of European shipyards until 2019, with a total value of more than €27 billion. In 2015, cruise lines spent €4.6 billion in European shipyards, representing a 1.2 percent increase in their revenue compared to 2014.
“The cruise industry continues to make significant contributions to Europe’s economic recovery,” said Pierfrancesco Vago, Chairman of CLIA Europe and Executive Chairman of MSC Cruises. “The impact is clear. More Europeans are choosing a cruise holiday, more cruise passengers are choosing Europe as a destination, and more cruise ships are being built in European shipyards. This translates into great economic benefits for the entire continent, including coastal areas that were hit disproportionately hard by the economic downturn.”
“We remain confident that the cruise industry’s growth in Europe will be sustained for years to come,” said Raphael von Heereman, CLIA Europe’s Secretary General. “CLIA continues to work with policymakers, regulators and other stakeholders on a variety of topics. For example, we continue to promote the revision of the EU Visa Code to encourage the arrival of more foreign tourists in Europe, and support improved and expanded port infrastructure throughout Europe.”
Europe’s economic contribution is a direct result of the impressive growth the cruise industry saw in 2015 as it reached 23.2 million passengers on ocean cruises globally. In 2014, cruise tourism generated nearly $120 billion in global economic contributions and the industry expects to see that number grow.