Inspired by the beauty, authenticity, and mystique of Saint Lucia, Global Ports Holding Plc (“GPH”) intends to support the expansion and enhancement the St. Lucian cruise tourism industry through an agreement with the Government of Saint Lucia for cruise-related development and operations. Through a 30-year partnership, GPH intends to collaborate with local industry leaders and stakeholders to design and build new port infrastructure, enhance the existing port facilities, and create more opportunities for Saint Lucians through cruise sector and destination development.
The port has not been sold because of this partnership. The people of St. Lucia, through the government, will retain ownership of the port during the entire length of the agreement. GPH will never own the port - our local management team will simply be awarded the privilege to manage and maximize the benefits earned through this asset on behalf of all Saint Lucians during the partnership period.
Project Investment Highlights:
- Build out of new vendors arcade facilities to replace the existing Vendor’s Arcade
- Design and Build out of a new Fishermen’s Village at Banannes Bay to maximize space for local vendors (who will have priority once the facility has been built.)
- Realignment of Berth 4 and Berth 5 at Port Castries
- Expansion of Berth 1 at Pointe Seraphine to accommodate an Oasis-class vessel, the largest cruise ship in service
- Construction of a boardwalk on the seaside adjacent to the government buildings between Pointe Seraphine and Castries to enhance connectivity and improve traffic flow in Castries while providing new ambience and opportunities for locals.
- Development of Building of a wooden ferry facility in the general environs of the Fisherman’s Village, Faux A Chaux Castries, with accompanying bus depot to mitigate the existing congestion
- Construction of concrete dock and upland facilities to enhance tendering operations in Soufriere and create attractive guest experience.
Benefits to All Stakeholders
For Saint Lucia01
- Creating fiscal space for St. Lucian government with the approximately $US 20 million SLASPA debt takeover
- Sustainable increase in passengers from its peak level 790,000 in 2019 to one million which will have a direct positive impact on GDP growth through higher passenger and crew spending
- Increased passenger spending through expansion of tourism product offerings at Vendor’s Arcade, Fisherman’s Village, and Soufriere Bay while transforming areas into a cohesive and attractive experience for passengers
- Engaging local talent for the build out of the infrastructure, as well as the running of the new local company (no foreign staff)
- Cross-marketing opportunities in front of more than 18 million passengers at GPH-managed ports worldwide
For the Community02
- Increased demand for local products and tours, taxi, and other operators to serve increasing passenger and crew volumes
- New opportunities for local entrepreneurs and business owners to develop new tourism products and experiences
- Reduce traffic congestion and improve the guest experience in and around Castries Harbour through improved ferry operations and creation of a boardwalk to connect the northern, eastern, and southern sections
- Creation a consultative committee comprised of local stakeholders to align the scope of the commercial project with the needs and goals of the community
- Business, marketing, and other forms of training and development workshops and seminars; knowledge transfer to local community
- Use of the cruise terminal as a promotion platform for local businesses
- Improved port area traffic flow and management through boardwalk construction
- More exposure to St. Lucian charm and heritage through expanded tourism offerings at Fisherman’s Village and Vendor’s Arcade
- More access to St. Lucian-made products and experiences through expanded retail spaces and new F&B facilities
- Improved customer satisfaction ratings through implementation of world-class service and operations models
- World-class health & safety protocols
For Cruise lines04
- Customize service offering for each type of vessel and/or operations
- Improvement of quality of key service offerings like security, water supply, logistics and ship’s maintenance
- Higher customer satisfaction scores
- Better guest experience
- Implementation of enhanced safety and environmental practices
- Ongoing conversations with cruise lines representatives to garner feedback and identify the needs of the different cruise ships
Who we are
If we are successful, our operations in St. Lucia will be managed through Global Ports Holding Plc, our Saint Lucian subsidiary, St Lucia Cruise Port.
Global Ports Holding Plc (“GPH”) is the world's largest independent cruise port operator with an established presence in the Caribbean, Mediterranean and Asia-Pacific regions.
Global Ports Holding operates 26 ports in 14 countries across four continents, with nearly two decades of proven track record as an international port operator. GPH provides services for more than 18 million passengers annually and serves the needs of the world’s cruise lines, ferries and mega yachts.
GPH operates several major cruise hubs from Barcelona and Singapore and high-traffic regional ports such as Nassau and Antigua & Barbuda. Our network of award-winning ports and terminals enables us to transfer best practices to our subsidiaries where we provide our cruise line customers and passengers with personalized, exemplary service. By embracing an ‘all stakeholder’ philosophy, we bring a mindful approach to the development and promotion of the ports that we manage, the destinations where we operate, and the advancement of the cruise industry.
GPH takes responsibility of the environmental impact of its group companies and subsidiaries. Having represented by its ports in significant locations around the world, GPH has a vision of reducing harmful effects by improving clean energy usage and raising awareness on resource utilization. In the light of this vision, GPH is willing to help to preserve the natural habitats of the world’s outstanding cities, where its ports are located, making a positive impact on the global environment as a result.
At Global Ports Holding, every venture that we embark on is an investment in people. We take immense pride in supporting the communities in which we operate around the world. Our partnerships reflect a simple yet powerful idea – that bringing more business, sustainably, to cruise destinations around the world, empowers people. Through a delicate balance of operational excellence, community engagement, and sustainable business practices, we aim empower Saint Lucians and to become an indispensable part of the community.
By employing and sharing knowledge with a fully local team, helping businesses and vendors to excel and grow, and giving back to the community, we will boost and strengthen the proud legacy that you have created as one of the most celebrated destinations in the region. The entire port facility, including new and existing infrastructure, will always be owned by the Government, and therefore the people of St. Lucia. We are honoured to have been selected to assist you in maximizing the benefits of this critical national asset.
We are excited to work with all Saint Lucians to help build a better community that inspires visitors and creates more joy and opportunity for those who live and work here. By continuously collaborating with port, industry, and community stakeholders, we will achieve even greater economic stability and growth to provide for future generations of Saint Lucians.
Global Ports Holding Plc (GPH) is the world’s largest independent cruise port operator. GPH operates 26 cruise ports in 14 countries and provides services to 18 million passengers a year globally in world-renowned ports including Nassau, the Bahamas and Antigua & Barbuda; Málaga, Las Palmas and Barcelona in Spain; several other ports in the Med, Adriatic and Asia regions. To learn more about GPH, visit: www.globalportsholding.com
St. Lucia Cruise Port is the name of the local subsidiary of GPH that we intend to establish in St. Lucia.
The St. Lucia Cruise Port (“SLCP”) project is a public-private partnership initiative designed to support the growth of the Saint Lucian cruise tourism industry and maximize the country’s potential as a leading cruise destination.
Under a 30-year agreement with the Government of Saint Lucia, Global Ports Holding Plc (“GPH”), through its local subsidiary, St. Lucia Cruise Port, will:
(1) repair, enhance, develop and operate the SLCP infrastructure
(2) expand the capacity of the port to accommodate larger ships
(3) achieve best-in-class customer satisfaction ratings
(4) increase cruise passenger traffic
(5) create a mutually beneficial partnership with the government of St. Lucia to secure St. Lucia’s position as a premier international cruise port
(6) partner with the St. Lucian community to enhance the destination and ensure its growth
Through a delicate balance of business development, community stewardship, and environmental management, we will provide cruise management and related services in Castries and tendering services in Soufriere. The closing of the transaction is expected to be finalized by Q2 of 2023.
GPH is known worldwide as a reliable partner of governments and cruise line brands around the world. We believe that our recent regional growth can support the desire of the Saint Lucian government to boost the local cruise sector by increasing interactions with cruise lines to explore cross-selling opportunities, participate in the development of new itineraries, and leverage the reputation of our brand to drive traffic to the port.
Many destinations around the region and direct competitors with St. Lucia are expanding their ports and brand profiles to boost post-pandemic cruise numbers and passenger spending as demand increases globally. This is a time-sensitive opportunity that the Government of Saint Lucia and the people of St. Lucia must leverage to the benefit of future generations. St. Lucia cannot and should not be left behind.
The memorandum of understanding between GPH and the Government of Saint Lucia was signed on October 20, 2022. We anticipate that the definitive agreement negotiations will continue through the first quarter of 2023. By Q2 2023, once the negotiations of the terms of the definitive agreement have been completed, the handover of operational management of the port will begin. This period will also mark the beginning of the construction planning process (design completion, permit requests, etc.) and the takeover of a portion of the government’s debt (approximately 2.8% of GDP). Construction is expected to commence by the end of 2023, pending any changes required.
The people of St. Lucia, through the St. Lucia Air & Sea Ports Authority (SLASPA) own and will continue to own the port throughout the term of the agreement and beyond. During the term, GPH will have the privilege of managing the port on behalf of the Government of St. Lucia to maximize its potential as a leading regional cruise destination.
At the end of the 30-year term, the cruise port facility, including all improvements financed by GPH, will be handed back at no cost to the government or the people of St. Lucia.
Thus, ownership of St. Lucia Cruise Port will remain in the hands of the people of St. Lucia throughout the entire agreement period and beyond. This is also the case at all GPH-managed ports.
Through the formation of a consultative committee comprised of representatives of relevant stakeholder groups, the St. Lucia Cruise Port team will work with the community to ensure that our common goals are achieved. We want to connect with community members, understand your needs, and create mutually beneficial partnerships to support all involved in ensuring the success of this project. We recognize that your success is our success.
We will also enhance the destination experience by creating new infrastructure at the Vendor’s Arcade, Fisherman’s Village, and Soufriere Bay that will create more opportunities to expand the existing cultural and heritage offerings.
Our local and international teams will be committed to promoting the port and the destination locally and abroad. We will work with government authorities, cruise lines and tourism operators and put our extensive global experience to work as the cruise industry prepares for growth. Engagement, alignment, and knowledge sharing will be key to sustainable success for all.
Our local port team will be committed to the growth and development of the country because they will be Saint Lucians. At GPH, we strongly believe that the port operator, government authorities and tourism industry stakeholders should work closely as the interests of all parties are aligned. We will, therefore, work with government authorities and tourism industry stakeholders to support the promotion of the destination and its attractions, set common principal objectives, and collaborate to create solutions to common challenges to contribute to prosperity of the country. We look forward to engaging key stakeholders through establishing consultative committees to achieve these goals.
GPH commenced preparations for the post-COVID cruising reality in January 2020 at the first sign of the pandemic. The Emergency Response Plans and the Health and Safety Protocols for all GPH-managed ports were revised to reflect the new reality. Valletta and Singapore – two of the ports we operate - became the first in the world to restart operations. All our ports have received the Safe Travels stamp from the World Travel and Tourism Council based on the enhanced protocols.
At GPH, we believe that one of the values that continues to make us successful is that we have a global yet local perspective on port operations. Nowhere is this more evident than in our staff complement at each port. Our teams are comprised of residents – citizens of the destinations we serve who have a vested interest, by birth, in the success of the port and the destination. As a result, all St. Lucia Air & Sea Ports Authority employees who may be interested in working with GPH will be given priority for employment under competitive terms.