Tampa Port Enjoys Boon In Opportunities, New Cruise Ship

Tampa's main port in Downtown Tampa continues to expand through the current recession.

Royal Caribbean International announced plans to increase cruise opportunities to and from Tampa by adding one more ship to its Tampa itinerary.

The Tampa Port Authority
also recently hosted a brainstorming session to investigate import and export opportunities between the U.S. and the Dominican Republic.

"Today is a great opportunity to promote shipping with our different partners and to maintain and create jobs, as well as to open doors to new markets. I see great business potential with the range of companies represented," says Ralph Puga, president of the Florida Foreign Trade Association.

"The feedback has been quite positive," adds Sheila Diaz de Andujar, commercial specialist with the U.S. Embassy in Santo Domingo. "Many D.R.-based company representatives believe they will be doing business with Tampa-area companies, in areas such as building materials and auto parts, among others."

Despite difficulties in parts of the nation's economy, Tampa has enjoyed a growth in cruise tourism in recent years.

"We have experienced a very welcomed growth trend in Tampa as a cruise port in recent years, and Royal Caribbean's decision to again enhance activity at the Port of Tampa is testimony to the strength of the Tampa cruise market," says Richard Wainio, Tampa's port director and CEO. "The Tampa Port Authority is extremely pleased to welcome the beautiful Jewel of the Seas to Tampa for the 2011-2012 season and we anticipate much success and growth in tourism in the years ahead," he said.

Writer: Missy Kavanaugh
Sources: Ralph Puga, Florida Foreign Trade Association; Richard Wainio, Tampa Port Authority

Signup for Email Alerts