Asia Cruise Summit in Qingdao, China


To strengthen the bond between PALFINGER and important local cruise industry partners, the company invited internal and external stakeholders to the Asia cruise summit in October 2021. Valuable knowledge was exchanged, and future plans were shared at the PALFINGER production site in Qingdao, China.


More than 40 representatives from upstream and downstream enterprises of the domestic cruise industry gathered at PALFINGER’s Qingdao site. One of the main topics of interest that day was the challenge of localizing manufacturing of cruise ships in Asia. With collective wisdom, the participants jointly explored the development of the cruise industry around the luxury market. The summit was hosted by PALFINGER in collaboration with the China National Cruise Ship Design Alliance and the Asian Cruise Academy of Shanghai Maritime University.


Exploring the Chinese cruise industry’s potential

Gunther Fleck, PALFINGER’s VP Sales and Service Marine, kicked off the summit emphasizing that China is one of the countries with the greatest potential in the luxury cruise construction market, thus attracting many supporting enterprises from Europe to invest in the country. During the summit, PALFINGER highlighted its impact on the Chinese market and addressed major achievements in marine engineering after years of cooperation and development, especially in the lifesaving appliance (LSA) market. Subsequently, the company introduced its solutions for the industry.


Sharing future goals, ambitions, and plans

Intelligent electrical solutions in view of the personalized design of future cruise ships and the rapidly approaching trend towards low-carbon and intelligent design were central topics at the Asia cruise summit. In fact, the event provided an excellent platform for PALFINGER to discuss future objectives. These further include strengthening the cooperation with enterprises in the domestic luxury cruise industry chain, the continuous improvement of the localization rate of lifeboats and other related equipment, the ambition to foster high-quality throughout China's cruise industry, and plans for the Qingdao plant to meet the global standards of the PALFINGER Group even better.


Exploring the Qingdao production site

Currently, Northeast Asia employs more than 25 professional technical multi-brand service experts distributed across several service stations in China as well as in Tokyo, Japan. With this insight provided during the summit, the participants were invited on a tour through PALFINGER’s Qingdao workshop. They learned more about the company's workshop layout and development plan, vacuum lamination process, and more. Finally, they observed medium and large cruise lifeboats and joined an LSA service demonstration.


The summit participants held fruitful discussions and unveiled important steps to be taken and trends to be considered in response to China’s growing importance in the future construction of luxury cruise ships in Asia.