DP World has said work will start next year to improve facilities for cruise liner tourists docking in Dubai as part of plans to attract 20 million visitors annually by 2020.
The operator of Rashid Port said work will start to connect cruise terminal 2 and 3 with a 465-metre bridge while the number of quays will be increased.
The company added that the current quays will be expanded and an additional terminal will be built for more capacity to accommodate the increasing number of cruise ships
Dubai will receive 157 cruise ships during the current cruise tourism season 2016-2017, which started in October and will continue until next April. This translates to a 16 percent increase compared to last season which received 134 cruise ships.
It is expected that Rashid Port will receive 650,000 cruise tourists which means a 30 percent increase over the same period of last year.
Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, group chairman and CEO of DP World said: “The strategic plan to attract a million cruise tourists by 2020 is on track following a clear road map. His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai is closely following up on this to make sure Dubai and the UAE become a regional and international hub for cruise tourism.
“Thanks to His Highness’s vision, Dubai goes the extra mile to be a top tourist destination.”
Mohammed Al Mannaei, director, Mina (port) Rashid added: “The UAE has all potentials to be the top cruise destination, and this is our target in the next few years. The port can receive 7 cruise ships simultaneously on a 1900m quay and capacity of 18,000 tourists through terminals 2 and 3. Cruise Terminal 3 is the biggest of its type worldwide with a capacity of 14,000 passengers and 125,000 sq m of area.”