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550K cruise visitors expected this season, cruise pier to reel in $100M yearly

Mark Vanterpool. File photo

In what has been touted as the ‘best’ government investment in the last 25 years, Works Minister Mark Vanterpool said the Tortola Pier Park is projected to reel in more than 550,000 cruise passengers this season and roughly $100 million yearly.

He said the projected number of cruise passengers is based on the bookings the BVI has received since Disney Cruise Line returned last week and the other major cruise line, Norweigan, is returning next month.

“We expect more [passengers] as success will follow success in this cruise ship business,” Vanterpool said in a statement this week.

He said with the territory’s success in the cruise industry thus far, “one million passengers [are] expected by 2020, and the people of the BVI will be the beneficiaries of $100 million per year from the cruise lines, as a result of the new cruise pier and Tortola Pier Park development.”

The works minister added that over a 10-year period, the aforementioned figure translates to approximately $1 billion in revenues.

“Our government remains extremely proud of this investment and we are confident that we will see maximum returns very quickly,” he stated.

He added that maximum economic benefits prior to the hurricane was already evident.

Vanterpool said though there continues to be ‘negative talk’ about the cruise pier, “the territory received great value for money with this project.”

“And as minister responsible for its development and a part of the Orlando Smith National Democratic Party government, I am extremely proud of this facility,” he said.

The Road Town based-facility cost some $82.9 million, roughly $30 million more than its initial estimated cost.

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35 Comments

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  1. You kidding me says:

    Professor Pothole, you are good at making up numbers aren’t you!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Those numbers are nonsense. Besides the belongers hate the tourist people so why would you be happy that so many are coming to the island. Do you really think the cruise lines are going to keep coming? After they see no progress in the clean up of s**thole island they will stop. Right now they are giving the island an opportunity. But….if there isn’t significant change in the roads, sewer system, trash and the bigotry, racism and unfriendly customs and port personnel then they WILL STOP COMING!!! This is a guarantee.!!!

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      • @ annonymous says:

        In all your posts you come across as a nasty bitter person, from another post I believe you are a Brit. If you hate the place so much leave or if you have left do yourself a favour and stop commenting, its only you its hurting, this from one Brit to another except this one loves the BVI

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      • realists says:

        who wouldnt be happy on building up their economy? smh.. more belongers should open up shops on the pier..

    • Rubber Duck says:

      Its $12 per passenger landing tax as far as I know. So for 550,000 passengers that is $6.6 million. So they will be spending $93.4 million in the Pier Park according to doctor Doolittle. Thats $170 for every man woman and child so about $760 for the average family.

      In a day.

      Its good to know the people in charge of public finances are so on the ball maths wise.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Couldn’t agree more. Made up figures from one of the least competent administrations on the planet.

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      • ex-ex-pat says:

        Exactly! It’s a joke.
        These families don’t even spend $700 on their whole cruise. It’s a cheap, cheap vacation for these folk. You’ll be lucky if they spend $20 each on the island. And half the folk don’t even bother getting off the ship and miss their free buffet food.
        And all the while we have to breath in the disgusting greenhouse gases exhausting from the ships funnel and deal with the consequences of global warming and rising sea levels.
        These cruise ship companies use and abuse the BVI’s pristine environment for short-term profit. And the BVI government stand by and let this happen like it’s a good thing – they’re no worse than a pimp!

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    • Lil Dwayne says:

      Prof Pothole, have you received any kickbacks from the public projects that you have been involved with? Will you disclose the BVI companies you own?

  2. Sam the man says:

    complete hog wash…this guy just throws figures out like confetti with no back up at all! $100m a year ha ha ha – there is absolutely no way! That’s over a quarter of a million dollars a day! , we don’t get cruise ships every day and even if we did no way do people individually spend many hundreds of dollars each time they visit!

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  3. Reality says:

    Of course he has to say this but we all see through the “smoke and mirrors” his figures are fantasy and the pier park was way over budget and far too expensive – fact…

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  4. citizen says:

    1 billion over 10 years is a lot of money for them to skim from

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  5. Brad Boynes says:

    Kinda sick of hearing this ingrate.

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  6. Oh says:

    So BCQS, Norwegian, Disney, FCIB, Royal Caribbean, Diamonds International, are all of these reputable entities corrupt along with our Government?

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    • Dingum says:

      Why did you write “truthful” in quotation marks? Do you doubt it too?

    • Frugan Bay says:

      What makes you think they are reputable?

    • sam the man says:

      get real everybody knows they wheel in —- in an attempt to masquerade a its all “value for money” validation. BCQS are a good firm but they are not stupid they will have —— their —— heavily as they have done in the past for the multiple cost over runs on the various ridiculously expensive walls and the expensive airport expansion and the hospital over run , indeed nearly every major project this inept government has undertaken…They don’t plan properly, have a loose brief (because it suits them for additional payments!) The “No Direction Party” has a pattern – overspend, money unaccounted for over runs…but if the Finance Minister refuses every year to complete annual audited accounts they just continue to get away with it…and so they will for the foreseeable future because we let it happen…

    • The answer is says:

      “Yes”

  7. Jail um says:

    Set of thief

  8. @Anonymous says:

    You are writing pure hatred, lies and anti local venom.

    Your hatred for us is plain to detect. But not only that, that hatred is also killing you.

    Do prolong your life by leaving the BVI permanently.

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  9. Stinky says:

    Oh goodie. I guess this means there’s no problem sending $8 million back to the EE & LL sewerage project.

  10. Lilly says:

    All who get contracts from government are just as bad. every contract cost more than initially stated. Government need to use new contractors as those they currently use have them in this preficament. No matter what thry are building there is an over-run. The real thieves are the biggest critics.

  11. Ex-ex-pat says:

    The cruise ship industry is not sustainable tourism. The ships are massive polluters – of both the oceans and the atmosphere which contribute heavily to global warming. The same global warming that is producing more intense and destructive hurricanes such as Irma.
    And yet the BVI and other small island nations who welcome cruise ships with open arms are the first to cry when they get destroyed by storms or suffer the impacts of rising sea levels. It’s time for the BVI to get smart and ban cruise ships and cheap mass-tourism that ruin ‘nature’s little secrets’ and promote long-term, sustainable, high earning eco tourism instead. I know many many families who USED to visit the BVI every year (sometimes 2 or 3 times a year) and spend many, many thousands of dollars each time – on hotels, on villas, on taxis, on rental cars, on ferries, on yachts, in small bars, in family run restaurants, in shops etc etc but ever since the massive cruise ships started calling and over-running CGB and Road Town and The Baths etc with thousands of people every day they have not returned to the BVI… they prefer go to destinations untouched by mass tourism.
    And I used to love CGB…. it was able to just about handle one or two small cruise ships a day but I have not set foot or spent a single dime in CGB during the day in over 15 years! On a cruise ship day the beach was horribly overcrowded and even when there were no ships all the sun loungers and drink kiosks and trash were an eyesore. Not my idea of nature’s little secrets.

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    • ex ex [email protected] says:

      a common theme I fully agree “Natures Little Secrets” is incorrect now….CGB isn’t a fraction of what it used to be sadly….and why why did they build that huge ugly white retaining wall at the back of the beach…ok I get protecting the grave yard but honestly can nobody think about what it will look like – this could have been addressed so much better – but no so minister desperate to make a buck on another poorly constructed wall – I just hope it wasn’t M as he really isn’t impressing me at all, after all the words and talk – F…k all….

  12. ndp heckler says:

    are they collecting all the rent on the pier?

  13. me says:

    wow. i better go round up some conch shells to sell on the side!

  14. Been there, done that says:

    This entire cruise ship scenario is so terribly wrong, from the outset 20 years ago. The government’s own surveys back then then showed it was trying to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.
    The “cruise sheep” spend no money (no more than 5% of tourist spending in the BVI) and they leave behind their rubbish and waste, while the execs from the cruise companies tell BVIslanders what to do and what they will pay, just like puppet masters pulling the strings. Everybody, tourists and locals, would have been far better off if all the funds wasted on beguiling the cruise ship companies and building the cruise ship dock/pier park had been spent on improving the infrastructure of the islands for the tourist (and locals alike) that come here to stay on land and/or yachts. Land and yacht tourism by far brings more money to the people of the territory than the cruise ships ever will.
    The government-types will hoot and champion the entry fees paid by the cruise ships, and the ports authority is all about the dock fees, but it’s all chump-change in the end – good money wasted on bad endeavours.

  15. Hugh Darley says:

    Your welcome. My check has not arrived. When do I get my money for bringing you the best investment in 25 years. Send my money today with thanks.

  16. VisitorJ says:

    I will be visiting by cruise ship in the near future. It is interesting to hear the different perspectives on cruise ship tourism. I’ve always felt welcome visiting your islands in the past, and think BVI is a special place on earth.

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