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Jan 7, 2011

Institute of maritime Studies supports local tenders in Cruise Industry

lloyd jones

As we said, talks are going on in to stem a proposal that could affect the livelihood of over one hundred seafarers. The Carnival Cruise Line’s new proposal can be costly for tender operators, who will have to invest millions of dollars to acquire new vessels to transport tourists to the mainland if they want to stay in the business. But according to the Institute of Maritime Studies, there have been discussions for the development of a cruise port, and if it is built, the issue of tenders would disappear. Major Lloyd Jones says it would be unfair to ask tenders to purchase larger boats when there is a risk that they would become obsolete if a cruise port is built in the next few years.  Jones, who represents the institute, says that there are local solutions that can develop and advance Belize’s maritime agenda.  And in his opinion, Carnival also needs to streamline its operation.

Major Lloyd Jones (Retired), Institute for Maritime Studies

“Throughout all the discussions I have heard, nobody has mentioned what the real gist of the problem is.  The problem is that Carnival has attempted now to engage a completely different person or company to provide the service when they currently have Belizeans doing it. The primary reason as we have been made to understand is cost. Carnival is saying it is too expensive to be doing the tender service. We understand that since 1998 there has not been an increase in the charge to Carnival. Even though fuel prices have increased, the cost of living has increased, the tender operators have maintained the same cost since 1998.  So if the small man in this case, has been able to absorb those losses. How can Carnival turn around and say we think you are too expensive and we are going to get somebody else to do it. I think that is the real issue and nobody has been up front with it. You hear that the tenders are unsafe which absolute nonsense.  And I wish that the Port Authority would say something about that. They are licensed by the Port Authority and they would not be licensed unless the Ports Commissioner felt they were safe. Then you hear about its going to bring greater efficiency. If you go to the tourist village, you will note that there are times when those tenders are back and forth between the ships with 10 people, with 20 people. You see. So there is a surge, I agree, in the mornings when people need to get on the tours and there is a surge in the evenings when people need to get back to the ship. But what Carnival, in fact all the cruise lines need to do, is to look at their own shipboard operations, to see how they can reduce the time to that it takes to disembark or to load the tenders. That can happen in many ways.  By loading multiple vessels at the same time or streamlining their operations. If you have ever been on one of these cruise ships, you will note people are in a line waiting to get through security, even though they have been screened at the tourist village. They go through a second screening to get onto the ships, that causes delay.”

Jones says to lay all the blame on the tenders for not being efficient is unfair.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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3 Responses for “Institute of maritime Studies supports local tenders in Cruise Industry”

  1. BZNinCALI says:

    Even though there is no exit screening, waiting to disembark is like watching paint dry, guests often sit on the floors in the hallways. I agree with Mr. Jones’ observations about the pace of the security screening. Maybe if one or two of our elected officials had tried going on a cruise without the trappings of an official title they would have seen how this company actually operates, given them an opportunity to incorporate what they learned into their negotiating strategy & saved themselves this headache.

    Pontoon boats may evoke bad memories for older Belizeans but is it an option we can consider as an interim solution? It may allow more boats to be loaded at the same time, give passengers added time on shore & a place on the water for the passengers to line up as they wait to go through the ship’s security. Just a thought….

  2. cg says:

    Mr are a smart man….you have eyes and ears that work…and see and hear beyond all the bs these people want us to believe….

  3. concerned says:

    he should be smart. he’s the former Ports Commissioner. He was dismissed because he did not bow topolitical pressure

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