MSC Cruises chairman Pierfrancesco Vago is taking over as global chairman of Clia in a two-year term.

He becomes the first European to serve in the role, having previously served as chairman of Clia Europe in 2014. 

Vago assumes the position following an unprecedented year for the cruise industry and the entire travel sector.

He succeeds former Royal Caribbean vice chairman Adam Goldstein, who recently completed his second term as the cruise industry association’s global chairman. Goldstein is involved with several technology start-ups and non-profit organisations

Looking ahead, Clia and its members remain focused on continuing to advance the resumption of cruising around the world as well as building upon its ongoing commitment to environmental sustainability. 

Clia president and chief executive Kelly Craighead said: “Mr Vago is a visionary leader within the global cruise community.

“We will benefit tremendously from his ideas, insights, and direction as we look to overcome the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and support the restart of the cruise industry internationally and in the US in particular.” 

Vago said: “This is a highly critical juncture for our industry globally.

“I am honoured and grateful for the support and trust of my peers as we work to resume the business of creating unforgettable experiences for our treasured guests, as well as generating economic impact and job opportunities benefiting millions of people worldwide who are touched in so many ways by our industry.

“With over 200 sailings that have taken place since last summer in various markets around the world, all with strict measures in place to promote public health, we have proven that a return to cruising is possible.

“I look forward to working with Clia leadership and our partners in the industry to continue down this path and help secure a vibrant future for all who depend on it.”