A Russian built cruise ships are on the horizon. Russia has come up with the idea of keeping tourist in the country, as the average Russian struggles to find vacation options.
Russia’s first cruise ship project since the 1950’s and the company charged with the task is Russia’s United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC). The president of the company, Aleksey Rakhmanov made the announcement about USC plans for the cruise industry. The company is known for building a variety of vessels for different areas of need, but has not built a cruise liner before.
It’s no surprise that USC is making the move into the cruise industry. After the incident in Ukraine many Russians traditional vacation markets began to dry up. That’s when the company noticed an 800 percent spike in Russian booking cruises, mostly in Europe. Now that’s also been affected due to the ruble deprecation, but now Russia has plans to keep tourist money in-house.
In the former Soviet Union cruise ship building was in full effect, but since the fall of communism in the 1990’s many manufactures were lost. USC will have to play catch up with other cruise industry companies in terms of technology. Once upon a time, it was common to see soviet built cruise ships sailing in the Black Sea and Baltic Sea.
Russia does face significant problems. USC orders many key components from neighboring Ukraine, and as we all know there not on speaking terms. The Trade Ministry has promised replacement engines by 2017 & 2018. No details about the ship size have been released, but Cruise Hive will continue to report.