Deal is in line with the Dubai Tourism Vision 2020 that aims to attract 20m visitors a year
Meraas has signed an agreement with Carnival Corporation with the goal of transforming Dubai into a
major regional maritime tourism hub. The companies will work together on port development, terminal
management and new cruise opportunities at Dubai Harbour.
The agreement was signed by Abdulla Al Habbai, group chairman of Meraas and Arnold W Donald, CEO
of Carnival Corporation. The deal follows the recent approval by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al
Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to make the Dubai Cruise
Terminal as the main hub for cruise tourism in Dubai.
As per the terms of the deal, Carnival Corporation will assist Meraas in ensuring the cruise terminal
meets the highest international standards of the cruise industry, while relevant authorities will be
responsible for security, immigration and customs. The deal also makes Dubai the base for Carnival
Corporation’s operations in the region.
“We welcome visitors from across the world and provide them with an exceptional tourism experience.
We want them to leave with lasting memories that they can share in their countries and communities.
The continuous development of infrastructure has enabled our country to be a destination of choice in
the region,” said Sheikh Mohammed.
Dubai Cruise Terminal is expected to open for business in October 2020. The terminal is expected to
become Carnival’s primary hub for homeporting and transit operations in the Middle East. Both parties
will also collaborate to identify and develop the cruise tourism business in the wider Arabian Gulf.
Al Habbai added, “Dubai Harbour is a new and unique addition to the city’s infrastructure and our
alignment with DP World to make Dubai Cruise Terminal the main cruise terminal in the emirate will
drive the transformation of Dubai into a fully integrated maritime tourism hub. In line with the
agreement with Carnival Corporation, the cruise hub at Dubai Harbour will reinforce Dubai's status as an
ideal holiday destination, a starting point for cruises to exclusive destinations and a gateway to exploring
the world. Our partnership will enhance the city’s tourism offering with new options for families, such as
Carnival Corporation aims to attract customers from India and China through new cruise options
launched from the terminal.
Donald concluded, “We have a long history in Dubai with our world-leading cruise brands. We are
excited to be part of this important venture that will drive new tourism opportunities for Dubai and the
region through cruising.”