According to transport officials, the number of cruise ships and cruise ship passengers visiting Taiwan in the first seven months of 2017 has shown strong year-on-year growth. “A total of 404 cruise ships sailed in and out of Taiwan between January and July, up 34.2% from the same period of last year,” said Yeh Hsieh-lung, Deputy Director, Transport Ministry’s Department of Navigation and Aviation.
The number of passengers during that period grew by 26.5% to reach 582,000. Among these passengers, 30,328 were from foreign countries, breaking the ministry’s goal of 25,000. Southeast Asian passengers topped the ‘fly-cruise’ market at 34.2%, followed by 28.3 % from Hong Kong and Macau and 10.3% from Japan.
According to Yeh, the number of cruise liners and passengers travelling to and from Taiwan throughout 2017 are expected to hit 600 and one million, making the future of Taiwan’s cruise tourism as a promising one.
“There have been more international cruise liners showing interest in Taiwan. To make Keelung even more attractive, Taiwan International Ports Corporation is also renovating two of the warehouses in the port to accommodate more passengers and their luggage,” he said.
The project, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2018, will increase the port’s transport capacity from 400 passengers per hour to 1,500.