Policy Proposals Urban and Local Development Seeking Strategic Promotion of Cruise Industry
Keidanren on Nov. 15, 2013, published its proposal for promoting the cruise industry.
In Asia, the number of people using cruise services has been rapidly growing along with income increases due to economic growth and lower travel costs due to the launch of services by huge cruise ships. It is said that one port call by a huge cruise ship carrying several thousand passengers is capable of generating economic effects of over 100 million yen.
In order to attract more cruise ships and passengers to Japan, Keidanren requests the government to work on the following issues:
- Simplification, acceleration and facilitation of the procedures for entry into the country as well as reviewing the requirements for visa issuance
- Strengthening the one-stop contact window for foreign cruise companies placed at the Ports and Harbours Bureau of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism
- Drastic reform of the consumption tax exemption system for foreign visitors
Eyeing boosting the cruise business further, Keidanren also insists that tight cooperation among the central government, local governments and the private sector is necessary to improve infrastructure such as wharfs and passenger terminals in some ports and harbors where huge cruise ships make frequent port calls. In addition, it is necessary to encourage workers in Japan to take long vacations, using their paid vacations.