The Government of Belize has said that the US$50 million proposal from Norwegian Cruise Line for a cruise port at Crawl Caye in southern Belize is off the table; however, the company has informed our newspaper that it will keep looking at options in Belize.
“Going forward, we will continue to look for development options both in Belize as well as other areas in the Caribbean,” the company said, without providing specific details.
The company had been in negotiations with the Government, as they looked at whether they could set up an alternative port for their passengers.
“We think that if we can develop a destination that is Belizean, where the workers and the people that they meet are Belizean, and where the atmosphere and the vibe and the culture is Belizean, in a high quality, international standard, destination, we think we will do much better – and introducing them to a part of the country – in a sensitive way – that is gorgeous!” Colin Murphy, NCL’s Vice President, Destination & Strategic Development, told Amandala Monday.
“The environmental people, the technical people have concluded that that particular development would unduly disturb the ecology and the environment there, and therefore they do not recommend that location. So the promoters understand that: Crawl Caye is off the table,” Minister of Labour, Local Government, Rural Development and National Emergency Management and Immigration and Nationality Godwin Hulse, told us.
“We appreciate the consideration given to our proposal by the Government of Belize and we respect their decision. Norwegian Cruise Line understands that protecting our oceans is vitally important. Our commitment to the preservation of our oceans and environmental stewardship has made environmental protection one of our core company values,” Norwegian said, in response to the Government’s decision.