A major cruise shipping company is fighting Australia's capital Canberra in order to have the industry kickstarted in the region.
Australian travel agents, tour operators, produce growers, entertainers, and marine service companies have said they're suffering without the incomes created by the multi-billion dollar industry.
Ship cruising is among Australia's most popular ways to travel, with ~1.3 million passengers annually. The industry's shutdown (due to the Coronavirus crisis) is estimated to have cost Australia USD 6 billion (~AUD 8 billion / EUR 5 billion).
Carnival Australia (Carnival Corporation-owned subsidiary) manages 7 brands/companies. It said a quarter of the agencies it works with have gone under amid the stoppage.
Cruise ship operators are desperate for a framework to restart domestically, with international liners setting sail in case passengers are vaccinated and tested.
New health & safety protocols have been planned, including COVID testing and extra cleaning.
Industry's representative CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association) said the ongoing red light on voyages is putting 18,000 Australian jobs at risk.
700+ cruises that would have carried 1.8+ million passengers from Australian ports have been cancelled during the pandemic, Carnival Australia said. Meanwhile, Cunard cancelled summer 2021-2022 season in Australia, despite resuming voyage in Europe in July 2021.
The Australian Government's Health Department said that the Government also continued "to consult with the States and Territories and the maritime industry on options for the staged resumption of cruising when the medical advice is that it is safe to do so."