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Author: Rebecca Gibson/01 May 2019/Categories: Interview, Cruise news, Ports and destinations
This article was first published in the Spring/Summer 2019 issue of Spring/Summer 2019 issue of International Cruise & Ferry Review. All information was correct at the time of printing, but may since have changed.
Cooperation and collaboration will be top priorities for MedCruise in 2019. First formed in 1996, the association works with its 30 associate members from cruise-related organisations and 71 port authorities from 21 countries, to develop and promote cruising in the Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea, Red Sea, Adriatic Sea, North Africa and near Atlantic.
Now, MedCruise is ramping up its collaboration efforts and joining forces with the likes of Cruise Lines International Association, Cruise Europe, the European Sea Ports Organisation, The World Association for Waterbone Transport Infrastructure (known as PIANC), International Association of Ports and Harbors, and various other international cruise port association networks. Together, these associations aim to negotiate new regulations, policies and best practices with other national and international organisations, such as the European Union, and propel the Mediterranean and its adjoining seas into the future.
The person tasked with managing these partnerships and ensuring they drive value for all involved is Theodora Riga, MedCruise’s director for Cooperation with Other Associations. “I’m responsible for managing communication with all local, national and/or international associations that are involved in the cruise sector,” she says. “My main aim is to cultivate a working environment that will facilitate cooperation with all of these associations and provide deliverables that will add value to MedCruise members.”
Communicating and collaborating with other associations is essential for building stronger relationships between ports, cruise lines and other key stakeholders, in the Mediterranean and its adjoining seas, says Riga. “At MedCruise, our mission is to develop sustainable cruise operations in ports and destinations in the Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea, Red Sea, Adriatic Sea and near Atlantic Sea,” she explains. “We strongly believe that by working closely with other associations, organisations and stakeholders, we will be able to create a dynamic cruise industry that goes from strength to strength.”
MedCruise plans to share best practices and insights from its member ports and destinations with the other associations. “We’ll provide statistics to our new association partners – and they will do the same for us – so we can work together to use these insights to produce studies, reports and other deliverables that will benefit our members and the cruise industry as a whole,” comments Riga. “This will help us to develop a unified approach to tackling challenges and capitalising on new opportunities so we can help cruise industry in the Med and its adjoining seas operate more smoothly. We’ll also be able to develop ways to better promote the region’s cruise business.”
Together, says Riga, MedCruise, its members and its association partners will drive the sustainable growth of the region’s cruise industry and ensure it remains prosperous for many years to come.
“MedCruise and its members share many common interests and goals with other associations and stakeholders in the wider cruise industry, so I’m honoured to have the opportunity to cooperate with so many of them and establish a Pan-European dialogue that will bring together each association’s unique expertise for everyone’s benefit,” Theodora Riga says. “Sharing expertise and maintaining active and close collaboration has been common practice among MedCruise members for more than 20 years and we look forward to extending our collaboration with all associations in 2019 and beyond.”
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