Building the foundation for the future of Singapore's cruise industry

​​Singapore, 2 October 2009 – The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) today marked a major milestone in the construction of the International Cruise Terminal (ICT), a groundbreaking development that brings Singapore closer to realising its aspiration to be the cruise hub of the region.

Held at the Marina South Pier, within close proximity of the future site of the ICT, the ICT Groundbreaking Ceremony was officiated by the Guest-of-Honour, Mr Lim Hng Kiang, Minister for Trade and Industry. Over 100 guests, comprising key industry partners, attended the event.

To be completed by the end of 2011, the ICT will double Singapore’s berth capacity and enable more cruise ships to homeport and call on Singapore and Asia. With the ICT’s deep waters, a large turning basin and lack of height restrictions, the world’s largest ships, such as the Oasis-class ships being built now, will be able to call at Singapore and enjoy dedicated cruise terminal facilities. It will complement the existing Singapore Cruise Centre at the Southern Waterfront precinct.

Singapore’s first purpose-built cruise terminal has been designed to ensure smooth and seamless accessibility for both passengers and cruise ships, to achieve quick passenger turnaround of 30 minutes from the point of disembarkation to the point of departure from the terminal. Its state-of-the-art functional capabilities and distinctive nautical-themed architecture harmonises with the terminal’s functions and settings to enhance the sense of arrival for cruise passengers, and will add to the architectural gems of the Singapore skyline in the Marina Bay area.

The new terminal is expected to meet the projected growth of the Asia-Pacific cruise industry, which constitutes about 7 per cent of the world’s cruise market today. The region continues to be a vital source of cruise passengers as well as an exotic and desirable destination for avid cruise passengers from the Western markets.

Asia, with its year-round tropical climate, varied landscapes, warm hospitality and multi-cultural appeal, fueled by the growth of low cost carriers and the traffic that they generate, is fast becoming the new cruise playground. The world’s top cruise players are increasing their presence in Asia and offering more cruises with Asian itineraries.

Addressing the guests at the ceremony, Minister Lim noted that the ICT will harness the positive growth momentum in the region and spur the growth of Singapore’s cruise industry.

“The Asian cruise industry is at the cusp of significant growth, and the opportunities for the region and Singapore are tremendous. The ICT will be a strategic enabler to achieve Singapore’s aspiration to be a cruise hub of Asia and gateway to the region, and testifies to Singapore’s continued commitment to the development of the Asian cruise industry,” he said.

As a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and as the current chair of the ASEAN Cruise Working Group, Singapore is working closely with ASEAN members to create a cruise-friendly environment in the region, develop enticing cruise itineraries and promote ASEAN as a cruise destination.

Cruise lines have also joined hands to further develop the regional cruise industry and establish Asia as a must-visit destination in the global cruise itinerary. Costa Cruises, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Silversea and Star Cruise have formed the Asia Cruise Association (ACA) in Singapore, thus entrenching Singapore’s position as a hub for the region.

Said ACA’s spokesperson, Jennifer Yap, “We believe our planned initiatives to promote the development, professional growth and commercial success of the cruise industry will significantly raise the profile of cruising in Asia.”

Ms Aw Kah Peng, Chief Executive of the Singapore Tourism Board, highlighted the growth potential of Singapore’s cruise industry: “Singapore’s cruise passenger throughput has grown steadily, registering a healthy average annual growth rate of 12% between 2003 and 2008. The industry has remained resilient amid the economic downturn, evident in the 20% growth in arrivals in the first half of this year against the same period last year. The STB targets to attract 1.6 million cruise passengers by 2015.”

According to the Singapore Cruise Centre, more than 1,000 ships called last year, contributing to a passenger throughput of over 920,000. The majority of these passengers were from Indonesia, India, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand and Europe - demonstrating Singapore’s international appeal as a cruise destination. The first half of 2009 saw 540,000 cruise arrivals and it is projected that Singapore will welcome its one-millionth cruise passenger by year end.

Leveraging Singapore’s prime location at the nexus of major international maritime routes as well as its excellent land, air and sea connectivity to destinations worldwide, the ICT will be a strategically located and world-class cruise terminal that will be abuzz with activity all year round. Its location, in Singapore’s new downtown lifestyle and financial hub, will complement business facilities as well as new leisure and entertainment attractions such as the Singapore Flyer, Marina Bay SandsTM, Gardens by the Bay and the Marina Barrage.

The ICT was designed by internationally-renowned architects, Bermello, Ajamil & Partners, Inc. (BA) and RSP Architects Planners & Engineers (Pte) Ltd. JTC Corporation, the leading agency in industrial development, was appointed as the Development Agent of the ICT.

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Artist impressions of the International Cruise Terminal
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Pictures of the event
Picture 1
Tourism industry partners gathered at Marina South Pier for the groundbreaking ceremony of the International Cruise Terminal (ICT).

Picture 2
Guest-of-Honour Mr Lim Hng Kiang, Minister for Trade and Industry, delivering his address at the International Cruise Terminal Groundbreaking Ceremony.

Picture 3
(Left to Right) Ms Aw Kah Peng, Chief Executive, Singapore Tourism Board with Minister for Trade and Industry, Mr Lim Hng Kiang and Mr Dario Rustico, Representative, Asia Cruise Association, jointly triggering the launch mechanism for the model of the International Cruise Terminal.

Picture 4
Viewing the exhibition panels which feature the design development of the International Cruise Terminal.
Left to Right:
Ms Aw Kah Peng, Chief Executive, Singapore Tourism Board
Mr Luis Ajamil, President, Bermello, Ajamil & Partners Inc
Mr Lim Hng Kiang, Minister for Trade and Industry
Dr Liu Thai-Ker, Director, RSP Architects Planners & Engineers

Picture 5
Panelists at the International Cruise Terminal press briefing held at Marina South Pier.
Left to Right:
Mr Luis Ajamil, President, Bermello, Ajamil & Partners Inc
Dr Liu Thai-Ker, Director, RSP Architects Planners & Engineers
Ms Margaret Teo, Assistant Chief Executive, Singapore Tourism Board
Mr Ong Geok Soo, Assistant Chief Executive, JTC Corporation

Annex A - International Cruise Terminal Fact Sheet

Annex B - International Cruise Terminal - A New Architectural Gem at Marina South

About the Singapore Tourism Board
The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is a leading economic development agency in tourism, one of Singapore’s key service sectors. Known for partnership, innovation and excellence, the mission of the Board is to champion tourism and build it into a key economic driver for Singapore. STB aims to differentiate and market Singapore as a must-visit destination offering enriching experiences through the “Uniquely Singapore” brand. For more information, please visit