MELAKA, Jan 16 — Melaka expects to have an international cruise terminal by 2022 following the state government’s approval for the deep-sea port to be built near Encore Melaka here.
Chief Minister Adly Zahari said the project would spur economic, logistics and tourism growth in the state, which is a Unesco World Heritage Site and also play an important role in social development.
“With this terminal, cruise ships can dock directly at the port, unlike the present where feeder boats have to be used to bring the tourists over as the water is too shallow for such ships to dock.
“The project will not only enhance the state’s tourism sector but also impact positively on the state’s economic sector particularly in terms of employment opportunities for the town and rural folks,” he told a media conference after a state government council meeting today.
He said the state government was negotiating with parties from Encore Melaka to finalise the cost for the project which will take two years to complete.
Cruise ship operators from Singapore are also in favour of the project, he said.
Last year, according to Adly, Melaka received 60 cruise ships via the existing terminals at Melaka Marina and Melaka Immigration, Customs, Quarantine and Security Complex with an average of 2,000 tourists aboard each ship.
“We are confident that this number will rise once the International Cruise Terminal facing the Straits of Melaka is ready,” he said.
The international terminal is one of three ports being developed by the state government and relevant shipping agencies. The other two are the Tanjung Bruas Port and Kuala Linggi International Port. — Bernama