Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri has entered into an agreement to build four new cruise ships for Carnival Corporation.
Valued at €2.5bn, the contract follows an agreement signed in March 2015. It is subjected to a set of terms including a satisfactory ship owner's investment in the project.
The new ships will be constructed at the shipyards in Monfalcone and Marghera, with work set to commence in 2016 and deliveries expected to take place in 2019 and 2020.
Upon delivery, the cruise ships will serve as an addition to the flourishing cruise markets, including China, Australia and others.
The cruises will be tailored to the specification and reputation of the brands.
Costa Asia brand will expect a delivery of two ships and one each for P&O Cruises Australia and Princess Cruises.
The 135,500t ships meant for Costa Asia and P&O Cruises will have a capacity of carrying 4,200 passengers while the 143,700t ship for Princess Cruises will carry 3,560 passengers.
Carnival Corporation CEO Arnold Donald said: "These ships will be great additions to our fleet that support our goal to exceed guest expectations and create great vacation memories for each guest onboard our ships.
These strategic investments in new ships that wow our guests are an important part of our measured growth strategy, which includes replacing less efficient ships with newer, larger and more efficient vessels over a very specific period of time."
The new cruise being constructed by Fincantieri, to be deployed in the Princess cruise fleet will be its fourth Royal Princess class vessel, after Royal, Regal and Majestic.
The details of the architecture and the features of the cruises are kept under cover; however, Carnival has revealed Costa Asia's new ships to bear an Italian signature in its design and will be deployed in the Asia Pacific region.
In November 2015, Fincantieri inked a deal with Viking Ocean Cruises to construct two cruise ships, additionally to the existing order of four sister ships.