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Authorities look to boost protection of cruise ship passengers

Ma Zhenhuan
Updated: Jul 11,2019 10:57 AM    China Daily

The nation’s transportation management authority is working to improve the marketing and management of cruise ship tickets to offer better protection to passengers.

Yi Jiyong, deputy head of the Water Transport Bureau under the Ministry of Transport, said they also want relevant parties to share passengers’ information in advance to facilitate procedures such as customs and border inspection.

“China’s cruise transportation market has witnessed a robust growth since 2006, currently becoming the world’s second largest tourist source market,” Yi said at a news conference in Ningbo, Zhejiang province, on July 10, ahead of the Maritime Day of China on July 11.

International cruise operators usually adopt chartered or bulk sale methods to market their cruise products through travel agencies.

However, such marketing methods have led to disputes and have had a negative social impact due to a vague understanding of rights and responsibilities among passengers, travel agencies and cruise operators, Yi said. To solve such dilemmas, the ministry launched a trial on international cruise ticket management in Shanghai last year.

It has also set up a cruise ticket management system to promote direct ticket selling and passenger information sharing.

A draft of the cruise ticket management system is currently gathering public opinions from home and abroad.

Yi also revealed that the water transportation authority has adopted a raft of measures to promote the development of green and smart ports, focusing on reduction of air pollution discharged by boats and ships while docking.

By the end of 2018, more than 3,700 shore power supply stations had been built in China, covering over 5,200 berths.

This year, a series of activities has been announced in Ningbo - including forums on high-quality maritime transportation development and a national yacht competition - to mark this year’s Maritime Day of China.

The Maritime Day of China was initiated in 2005 to mark the 600th anniversary of the first ocean voyage of Zheng He, a navigator in Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), who made seven overseas voyages to Southeast Asia, South Asia, the Middle East and East Africa for cultural and economic exchanges with the rest of the world.