Cruise Call

Nov 16, 2010 (LBO) – A luxury passenger vessel, MV Le Diamant, operated by the CMA CGM shipping line, has begun calls at Sri Lankan ports following the end of the island’s 30-year ethnic war. Its second voyage is planned for May 2011. The Sri Lanka Ports Authority said the ship called at the eastern port of Trincomalee on November 14, the first time in 30 years the harbor has got a cruise call.

The vessel also called at the ports of Galle on the south coast and Colombo, on the west coast.

The cruise ship, which has a capacity of 112 cabins, is one of five luxury cruise ships owned and operated by CMA CGM Group’s cruise arm Compangnie de Ponant.

CMA CGM is the world’s third largest container shipping line.

The SLPA said the line’s local agent, CMA CGM Lanka, a subsidiary of the Hayleys conglomerate, had lobbied for the start of cruise calls with its French principals.

The ship was the first cruise liner to call three ports in the country on the same voyage.