China has launched its first cruise liner to sail via its ambitious transcontinental initiative Maritime Silk Road (MSR) on its maiden voyage during which it will visit three South-East Asian nations.
The liner has scheduled stops in Vietnam, the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia before eventually reaches Kuantan Port in Malaysia. The cruise liner set off from the Beihai port in southwest China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.
The 135-m-long 20-m-wide modern cruise ship can accommodate about 400 people and is equipped with wireless Internet access.
Zhang Xiaoqin, vice governor of Guangxi, said the new cruise liner was another milestone in China-Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) cooperation and would promote maritime connectivity in the region.
The 21st century MSR project is an initiative of President Xi Jinping to string together partnerships with countries in the Asia-Pacific and the Indian Ocean, including India.