December 7, 2022
Mayor Eric Adams: Thank you so much. I wish I was going with you guys on this cruise. Look at the ship. Isn’t this a beautiful ship? Every time you go on a cruise, it’s such an amazing experience, particularly when you have an amazing organization like MSC. They understand the imperativeness of community-corporate sponsorship, and so it’s great to be here today to meet everyone of… I know Andrew Kimball is smiling every time we have new businesses here, it’s important, but our ambassadors as well as Parks … Sue Donoghue, our Parks commissioner is also smiling because of this amazing contribution that we are going to receive from MSC.
Sometimes we often focus internally on the city without understanding the full scope of our waterways. We are New York City because of our waterways. This is what made our city, it allowed foreign travel, it allows our ports of entry, it allows us to continue to expand our harbor and we often forget that, our harbor, our ports. That is what brought trade here. It brought international travelers and different ideas, and it grew our economy. The uniqueness of New York City really lies in our waterways and our harbors that bring people in and out.
But the great news is starting April 2023, MSC Cruises will expand to New York City with year round cruises from the Brooklyn Terminal. We are really excited about that. But before I go into details, I want to congratulate MSC on this evening’s naming of cruise ship Seascape. This is right here.
Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman of Cruise Division, MSC Group: Right here.
Mayor Adams: How many stories?
Mayor Adams: Love it. Love it, love it, love it, love it, love it, love it. What are you doing in my room? That’s my suite. This is an amazing opportunity. The first MSC cruise ship to be named in New York City and the newest cruise ship in the world. Now the two guys in the back, are those captains?
Vago: Yes. Over there?
Mayor Adams: Come on. We got to show off your outfits…
Mayor Adams: These are officers.
Vago: We have the captain and the hotel director.
Mayor Adams: Captain and hotel… Come on. Coming up here with these sharp outfits.
Vago: (Inaudible) Seascape.
Mayor Adams: Good to meet you also. Bonjour. And we want to also thank MSC for giving back to our community with a generous donation of $236,000 to the New York City Parks GreenThumb Program and to our New York City Junior Ambassador program. Let’s give it up for that.
Mayor Adams: So, some good money. And these are our amazing junior ambassadors, and we’re really excited about this contribution. The donation to the Junior Ambassador program would benefit over 600 students and educators, helping them learn about global issues such as international peace and security. And the donation to parks will go towards support for seven Red Hook GreenThumb Gardens, helping increase community and connectivity building green spaces.
This is the kind of partnership that we look forward to and we want to thank this great organization for seeing the importance of not only cruising, but giving back in a very real way. But this is not the end of our good news. The year-round cruises from the Brooklyn terminal will create a huge boost to our tourism and create up to 10,000 full-time jobs in the city, an equivalent to 10,000 full-time jobs. That’s a hand clap right there as well.
And SMS. The MS staffing provided in New York City will hire a minimum of 150 people in terminal operation with salaries estimated at $20 an hour. They will also work closely with our Workforce Development Center, something that we are looking to continue to expand on. We’re anticipating 219,000 passengers arriving in New York City per year on MSC Cruises. And this would create, and Andrew Kimball, you like this number, $102 million a year in spending in our restaurants, our shops, in our bars. Anytime we have international travelers that come here, we just give them one assignment, spend money, spend money, spend money. And so they’re going to spend a lot of money here. This is a real boost to our economy, a boost to tourism, and a boost to contributing to our local communities. So we are thrilled MSC Cruises is dropping its anchor in New York. And now it is my pleasure to invite Mr. Vago, the executive chairman of MSC, to say a few words, but I cannot say thank you enough.
Vago: Thank you.
Mayor Adams: This is a great place to do business in New York City. Thank you.
Vago: (Speaks in Italian.) Good morning everyone. Let me first thank Mayor Adams for his time. Dear Mayor, you and your administration run one of the greatest and busiest cities of the world, you honor us with your presence here today. So thank you very much for being with us.
Mayor Adams: Thank you.
Vago: It does show how close you aligned our groups priorities are with your agenda based on economic growth. We just heard the jobs, the sustainability, and philanthropy. MSC Cruises is the world’s fastest-growing cruise lines and the third largest cruise line in the world. There we host over 170 nationalities on board of our ships here in US and obviously globally.
With our presence in the US, we are set to increase from three ships to five in 2023. Our economic impact will continue, obviously, to increase. And come of April, we just served the mayor, (Speaks in Italian), we call the Big Apple and we call the Big Apple home, which to us makes us so proud.
Thousands of international tourists will visit New York City in conjunction with their cruise with us. We will drive job creation and economic development here, direct, indirect, and induced to celebrate our entry in the New York City market. Tonight, we will hold here the naming ceremony of this beautiful ship, captain, MSC Seascape. She’s our newest USA flagship.
Dear mayor, as we live behind the downturn, obviously caused by the pandemic, we will do our best to contribute to ongoing efforts to attract more foreigner visitors to New York. As a truly international cruise line, we are your partner when it comes to promoting your city during this crucial time of economic recovery. Our group’s journey in New York started a long time ago in 1985. Our cargo division is actually the market leader in the US but especially here in New York. It is strongly embedded locally managing the port New York container terminal and our US headquarter around Fifth Avenue.
So, we are here and we call it home already. But as you can appreciate, our cruise division will also, and I’m looking at the boss here, need a terminal of its own if we want to grow our mutually beneficial operation in your city. So, we are very close to Pier 90 and that’s a hinted sign that we could work on it.
Mayor Adams: You got to see it.
Vago: Yes. On this note, I want to recognize the work of Andrew Kimball, president of New York City Economic Development Corporation. So, I’m very much looking forward to work together and to realizing our vision and working to establish MSC Cruises on terminal here in New York. Whenever we arrive at a new destination, we always take steps to be part of the social fabric that what has bring us really here today. As you’ve just heard, the MSC Foundation and the mayor’s funds to advance New York City are joining forces and to us, it makes us so proud. Together we will support vulnerable New York communities through programs in the fields of education and the environment. So important. This two-year partnership will see us support the youth-focused and youth-led New York City Junior Ambassador program. We will also support New York City Parks GreenThumb, the community-based urban gardening program.
For us at MSC Group, sustainability is at the very center of everything we do. We are taking meaningful steps to decrease our fleets’ environmental footprint through the development and scaling of new fields and technologies. Just as New York City, our vision is to reach net-zero by 2050.
Mayor Adams: Love it.
Vago: For a business that relies on an expanded nature conservation efforts and also of critical importance is education. Our work in this field is seeing us protect mangrove forest, seagrass, and coral. Mangrove, seagrass, and coral, MSC. This is ultimately what has brought us together with the Mayor’s Fund, with our joint actions. In this progress, we hope to contributing to raising awareness about these critical matters in New York, particularly with the youth.
Dear Mayor, thank you very much for hosting us in your beautiful city, the Big Apple. Also, thanks to Marcella Tillett, executive director of Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City. I look forward to two years of fruitful collaboration, hopefully more. It’s a promise. Finally, I want to thank especially, Edward Mermelstein, and New York City’s commissioner for International Affairs and his team for everything that you guys have done for our brand and our group. Thank you so much.
Mayor Adams: Thank you.
Vago: Thank you, Mayor. Thank you very much.
December 7, 2022