Friday, July 16, 2021

Federal Government to lift Cruise Ship Ban in November

The Cruise Ship L'Austral in Prince Rupert in September of 2019

While it will be too late for the 2021 Cruise Ship season on the North Coast, the hopes for a return of the Big ships will be looking ahead to 2022, with the Federal Government announcing that as of November 1st, cruise lines will once again be allowed to transit to Canadian Ports. though with a caveat that notes the return is dependent on the state of COVID at the time.

The announcement by Federal Minister of Transport Omar Alghabra one that was welcomed by Rob Fleming, the Provincial Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure.

“I would like to thank the federal government for working collaboratively and constructively with us, and for taking action on this issue that is an important part of BC’s economy. We know that cruise ship passengers want a Canadian experience in British Columbia, and we know that British Columbians want to welcome them to our cities when it is safe to do so.”

The full statement from Thursday can be reviewed here.

With the North Coast season usually at an end by the last week of September, the news won't be of much interest locally, but at least offers some sense of certainty for planning for 2022.

However, what level of a return we may see could hinge on whether American politicians move ahead with their recent calls to make the current American regulation allowing for transit through Canadian waters without a stop a permanent thing.

American politicians approved the temporary measure in May and even before the ink from the President's pen was dry, the calls were being made to do away with the original law that dates back more than a century.

Should the Americans continue their approach of 2021 into future years there would be some impact on the local schedule which has featured a number of the previously required transit stops in the past.

For more notes on the Cruise Industry on the North Coast see our archive page here.

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