Josh Hawley, R-Mo., that cruise lines should come back to America and pay their taxes.
Trump said today that he would like to provide assistance to the cruise industry, which supports local economies in the US, but it is "very tough to make a loan to company when they're based in a different country".
The economic stimulus package includes $500 billion in loans and loan guarantees to industries affected by the pandemic, but in order to be eligible for those loans, a company must be created or organized in the United States or under the laws of the United States and have significant operations in and a majority of its employees based in the United States.
A key sticking point for the cruise companies is that while they are based in the USA, they are incorporated overseas. American-owned cruise ship companies and owners of smaller passenger vessels and port facilities are expected to qualify for the assistance.
They do, however, pay state income taxes and port fees, according to The Wall Street Journal. Shares of the largest cruise lines, including Carnival, Royal Caribbean Cruises, and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings fell sharply.
Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian are headquartered in the United States, but most vessels are registered in Panama, Bermuda or elsewhere and are staffed with employees hired outside the United States to avoid paying USA taxes and following U.S. employment rules.
"It's very hard to make a loan to a company when they are based in a different country", Trump said.
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New York City schools are closed through April 20, though officials say the city closure could last the rest of the school year. The state is already facing an estimated $15 billion budget deficit, some of it due to a drop in the stock market.
"As it relates to the rescue package, cruise lines are not lobbying for a bailout".
"We did not ask nor expect a cash bailout from the USA government", said Roger Frizzell, a spokesman for Carnival.
"We are also working with our crew to sort out the issues this decision presents for them".
"We are going to work very hard on the cruise-line business, and we are going to try to work something out", he said.
The CLIA said it would continue working with the government to protect the cruise industry as companies continue to secure loans to improve liquidity, which experts believe should become an industry-wide trend. "The cruise line business is very important".
Responding to such accusations in the past, the Cruise Line Industry Assn. said the cruise industry has invested heavily in innovative technologies to reduce air and water pollution and adheres to regulations imposed by agencies such as the International Labor Organization, the World Organization for health, the United States Coast Guard, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Environmental Protection Agency.