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Workshop on Sustainable Small-Scale Cruising for the Black Sea

Workshop on Sustainable Small-Scale Cruising for the Black Sea.

Workshop on Sustainable Small-Scale Cruising for the Black Sea

14 September 2018


   On September 2018, the CCIFG took part in the workshop on Sustainable Small-Scale Cruising for the Black Sea. The aim was to introduce the cruising as a way to enhance tourism in the region.


Why not big boat cruises ?


   The big boat cruises cannot stop in many of ports as the infrastructure are not adequate and nowadays they have negative image as they creat traffic and environmental issues.
Also, the profit usually goes to the shipping companies and very few to the countries visited as the tourists are mostly leaving on the boat. So, it creates very few jobs in the countries.


Advantages of small cruises


   The small cruises bring less volume but more value because the tourists are interested in the land activities. The jobs can be local for the ship design, the ship construction, the cruise marketing, the supply and the fuel, the transport and the services in home port, …
   The French company ODYSSEA was mention as an example of this type of cruise in France.
   The targeted customer must also be defined. Is the cruises dedicated to foreign tourists or to the countries of the region ?


Create interest in the Batumi port


   But in order to develop these activities, the quality of the port infrastructure must also be taken into account.
   Batumi put into place in 2015 a cruise development strategy but very few points were developed. The actual port as several technical obstacles including the operation practices that are outdated. Also, only boats measuring less than 225 meters can stop in Batumi so the big boat cruises do not represent an option for the city. Batumi also has difficulties with its geographical position as it is the farthest point in the Black Sea, costing additional time and money.
Nevertheless the local government is inclined to create a favourable ecosystem for companies wishing to start their business in the small cruises, by investing in surveys, by obtaining data, by reducing the charges at the port,… The government needs to take concrete action for the private business to become interested.
   An activity around the fairy’s boat could also be considered as the seasonality is not an issue and would be a good way to promote the area.

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