> > major investments for the development and promotion of international cruiseshipping

October 31, 2013

major investments for the development and promotion of international cruiseshipping

Saguenay, 31 October 2011 – On a stopover at Saguenay earlier today, Pascal Bérubé, Minister for Tourism, announced investments of $7 625 000 to enhance and position the Saint Lawrence as a must see tourist destination on international cruise circuits.

An amount of $5.9 million has been earmarked to ensure the continuation of the Cruise Strategy Assistance Program. This program allows Tourism Québec to prioritize support for tourism infrastructure initiatives in six ports of call which welcome international cruise ships: Baie-Comeau, Gaspé, Havre-Saint-Pierre, Magdalen Islands, Saguenay and Sept-Îles.

Under the Tourism Industry Development Program, additional financial assistance totalling $1 725 000 has been granted Cruise the Saint Lawrence (CSL) to allow the latter to implement its action plan for 2013-2016. Assistance has been segmented as follows: $500 000 in 2013-2014, $600 000 in 2014-2015 and $625 000 in 2015-­2016. The cost of this plan which focuses on port of call support, solicitation of international cruise lines and assurance of quality services at destination amounts to $6 million in total.

These major investments are designed to complement the $63.7 million announced on October 17th by the minister within the context of the government's Putting Jobs First economic policy. Promotion of the Saint Lawrence was presented as a key factor for continued growth in Québec's tourism sector.

"By international cruise destination standards, the Saint Lawrence is still young. Although the destination continues to gain in notoriety, the quality of the tourism experience must continue to progress given ongoing expansion in the world tourism industry and increasingly stiff competition. To foster growth in this industry, provide for sustainability over time and ensure that the considerable sums invested generate expected levels of profitably, it is imperative for the government to provide assistance to the various of ports of call. I am particularly proud to confirm to CSL increased financial support to be spread out over the coming three years. Action in this regard speaks to the confidence of Tourism Québec in a front-line partner dedicated to the success of tourism in Québec. CSL has proven a highly effective marketing lever in world circles, evidenced by international cruiseshipping performance in our home market," stated Minister Bérubé.

In the words of the President of CSL, Priscilla Nemey, "These major financial contributions will enable CSL to sustain and consolidate current momentum, thereby allowing Destination Saint Lawrence to migrate from emerging mode to an all important growth mode."

This being said, tourism supply development efforts in our various ports of call must continue to progress. The budget of $5.9 million will make it possible to support initiatives which combine to enhance the power of attraction of those communities having elected to invest in international cruiseshipping as a means of diversifying their economies and creating jobs.

This entire series of initiatives is in full keeping with the rollout of the 2012-2020 Tourism Industry Development Plan under which Tourism Québec has committed to assisting our international cruiseshipping ports of call in propelling Destination Saint Lawrence to the rank of must see tourism icon.

Forecast results for 2013 season ripe with promise

Broader trends for the destination as a whole indicate that unprecedented performance in 2012 will be readily surpassed in 2013. Readers will bear in mind that in 2012 just over 230 000 cruiseshippers and 90 000 crew members stopped in at our ports of call, an increase of 60% over the previous season.

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Valérie Noël-Létourneau
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister for Tourism 418 528-8063


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