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Prime Minister Perry Christie on Caribbean Tourism

“Long after we will have finished my army in a Chair, The Bahamas will continue a shortcoming for a CARICOM Tourism table and we wish to oath to Members that we intend to lift on my time as conduct of that Desk with as many outcome as we intend to see a tourism responsibilities carried out in a Bahamas by my Minister. That outcome will simulate my clever faith that it is by tourism expansion and growth that we have a common event to start to residence a problem of girl stagnation many rapidly.

I know that for some, tourism competence be aromatic of a partial of a story that we would wish to keep barricaded. For many of a countries, tourism is a largest earner of unfamiliar exchange. For many of a countries, tourism is a largest employer. For all of a countries tourism absorbs a broadest operation of skills of any mercantile sector. For all of a countries, tourism is a one zone for that there is no such thing as a jobless recovery. The really inlet of tourism requires some-more people to be hired with augmenting series of visitors. If stagnation generally girl stagnation is a flay of a times, there appears to be no improved mercantile zone for us to welcome in heading us closer to a promises that we have done to a lands.

I come to this perspective not usually since of a unique advantages that tourism delivers. we also come to this perspective since we have turn assured that when we demeanour during a universe currently and during a several tellurian trade blocs that have been shaped and when we inspect a several initiatives being followed by CARICOM, it seems to me that a one healthy confederation from that a CARICOM nations have many to advantage is a God given confederation accorded us by carrying within a Caribbean a many beneficial conditions for existence on a planet.

I am assured that tourism, a largest partial of a common economies and, in many cases, a largest partial of a particular economies deserves many some-more courtesy during a informal meetings. Further, we am swayed that tourism growth and all that it entails is a fastest trail to shortening stagnation in a segment and a fastest trail to shortening a debt burdens that terrifies arriving generations. We are ostensible to make any era better. we fear that we are on a margin of withdrawal a subsequent era with a many larger weight to lift if we don’t start to concentration on ways to make a healthy strengths stronger.

I know about and honour a absolute significance of a Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) to that a Ministers of Tourism belong. But it has occurred to me that unless CARICOM, that Caribbean physique with a largest entertainment of Government Heads of a Caribbean, signals to CTO that tourism is really critical to a common good, they will take their cues from a monument of discussions about tourism during a CARICOM meetings as a indicator of a loyal beliefs.

My views are serve stirred by what we see function with a Cuban embargo and a United States. You will remember that it was CARICOM that spoke longest and loudest about a need for that embargo to be removed. In fact, not prolonged after a many new assembly as a physique in Cuba, a assembly that we had a payoff to Chair, a proclamation of vigilant was done by President Obama.

Mr Chairman, we have to tell we that after reading a Paper constructed by a Caribbean Hotel Tourism Association on a expected impact on Caribbean tourism of a reopening of Cuba to transport for United States citizens, we hear their interest for us to act as a organisation to take full advantage of a event to a common benefit. In their recommendation to settle a Caribbean Basin Tourism Initiative, we hear their interest for CARICOM to act in a some-more accordant manner. The Caribbean Basin Tourism Initiative promises that a adults can accept advantages from a common movement that we competence not be means to grasp for them as particular nations.

We need to take movement to grasp a reciprocal rebate of taxes on airline tickets between a United States and Canada. The benefaction high taxes have a outcome of shortening transport rather than augmenting it.

I am not suggesting for one impulse that we should mislay all taxes from airline tickets immediately and entice a United States, Europe and South American countries to do a same. What we am seeking is that we inspect a expected effects of such a pierce on employment, on sum spending and on taxation collection. we do know that a new PriceWaterhouseCoopers news on a effects of a UK imposed APD on airline tickets has been disastrous for a UK in terms of jobs and taxation collection. While we cite to trust that a lobbying efforts had some effect, it is transparent that some of a adjustments that a UK done to APD is a outcome of finding that that sheet taxation was counterproductive.

With taxes on airline tickets coming 65% of a sum sheet prices in some cases in a Caribbean, there is an evidence to be done that a amicable and mercantile advantages to be subsequent from increasing volumes of visitors surpass a taxes removed.

So Mr Chairman, this due Caribbean Tourism Initiative deserves some closer hearing for a advantage of all CARICOM communities. In line with a authors of a document, a universe many tourism contingent region, a Caribbean, should also be seen to be a many tourism competent. We contingency go serve in addressing a atmosphere travel rules, a shipping rules, a informal selling rules, training and development, etc.

I resolutely trust that this could be a commencement of some poignant stairs in a instruction of creation things improved in a Bahamas and improved in a Caribbean.”

Caribbean Tourism Organizatiom,

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