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Wednesday 13 March 2013

MSC Cruises to become the world’s third largest cruise line

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The much anticipated launch this month of the MSC Preziosa will push MSC Cruises into the world's third spot for passenger capacity.

It will be the first time the family-owned cruise line has reached such a high position, closing in on first and second placeholders Carnival Cruises and Royal Caribbean International with an annual capacity of 1.45 million guests across its 12 ships.

"We see it as a very significant milestone," said Lynne Clarke, managing director of MSC Cruises Australia and New Zealand.

"When you consider MSC Cruises is a family owned company, it's a great achievement to be positioned so high against such public listed corporations," she said

"MSC Cruises has come such a long way since launching the first cruise ship, the now decommissioned MSC Melody, in 1997.

"In fact, since 2003, we have had an exciting time launching another 11 ships with the MSC Preziosa, about to be officially unveiled."

The newcomer, to be the fourth member of the cruise line's ever-expanding Fantasia class, will be christened by the MSC Cruises' godmother, screen legend Sophia Loren, in a gala event in the Italian port of Genoa on Saturday, March 23.

The delivery of the MSC Preziosa will see MSC Cruises increase passenger capacity to 1.45 million on 12 ships this year, a 9.4 percent capacity increase over 2012, leaving such cruise lines as Costa Crociere, Princess Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line in its wake.

MSC Cruises' "bronze medal" ranking is based on data received from the 2013 Cruise Industry News Annual Report.

By market, MSC Cruises is expected to have over 50 per cent of its capacity in the Mediterranean, 14 per cent in South America, 12.5 percent in Northern Europe, and the remainder in Africa, the Caribbean, Canary Islands and Red Sea.

Details: MSC Cruises, phone 1300 028502 (Australia), 0508 4278473 (NZ),

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