Leaders of the Corporación de Puertos del Conosur (Southern Cone Ports Corp.) met with Chile's tourism undersecretary, Javiera Montes Cruz, to discuss the importance of the cruise sector to the national economy.

The Montréal Port Authority welcomed the Québec government's first Québec Maritime Strategy, a commitment to support the maritime industry with more than $1.5bn in investments.

Last month Seatrade Cruise News reported Ted Blamey’s Sydney-based Chart Management Consultants had accepted a brief to come up with a cruise ship strategy for a ‘prominent Asian nation.’

In a significant development that may be encouraging to cruise operators, the US government has approved at least four Florida companies to operate ferry service to Cuba, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

Former US Defense Secretary Robert Gates is scheduled to sail aboard Queen Mary 2's Aug. 11 trans-Atlantic voyage from Southampton to New York.

April 14 update: President Obama endorses removing Cuba from list of states that sponsor terrorism.

With US and Cuban leaders meeting over the weekend for the first time in more than half a century, the cruise industry's hopes got another boost that the trade embargo may be closer to ending, allowing US lines to call.

Underscoring the importance of the cruise business to St. Kitts and Nevis, newly installed Tourism Minister Lindsay Grant was a visible presence at Cruise Shipping Miami in his first trip abroad since taking office 18 days earlier.

Tobago's tourism secretary is in Washington, DC, on a two-day fact-finding mission to explore the potential support for building dedicated berthing facilities for the growing cruise business.

Between March 2-6, six cruise ships carrying more than 11,500 passengers and 5,000 crew will visit Darwin making it the busiest cruise week on record.

Sen. Jay Rockefeller praised the US Department of Transportation's creation of a web page that he said 'for the first time will give consumers a reliable one-stop resource where they can find information on important consumer protection issues related to cruise vacations.'

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