ST GEORGE’S, Grenada (GIS) -- Increased marketing opportunities, greater potential for earning and better partnership with airlines and cruise ships are just a few of the benefits that Grenada will enjoy as it embarks upon new tourism frontiers by embracing the concept of a tourism authority.
At a media conference held on Wednesday, members of the transition team, comprising the minister of tourism, civil aviation and culture, Alexandra Otway-Noel; parliamentary secretary in the ministry of agriculture, Senator Simon Stiell; and lead consultant and former tourism minister in Barbados, Noel Lynch, spoke to the media about the significance of the Grenada Board of Tourism (GBT) to Grenada Tourism Authority (GTA) transition and the positive impact it can have on Grenada’s tourism industry.
Tourism minister Alexandra Otway-Noel
“We all understand that the tourism sector is critical to Grenada,” Otway-Noel said at the conference. “It is the number one driving force in our economy and it is important that we are meeting all the marks. In doing so, our marketing and our public relations and all of these areas have to be manned by the most appropriate people, in a time when the tourism industry is changing so rapidly.”
According to Otway-Noel, the decision to transition, which was well thought out and very calculated, did not exclude the relevant stakeholders.
“When the strategic plan was created in 2012, hundreds of tourism stakeholders participated and this was one of the components coming out of that, which needed to be done. So, what we are doing is carrying out the wishes of the tourism sector and making sure that Grenada is where it ought to be,” she said.
Stiell, former director of the Grenada Board of Tourism, said that with this strategic move, Grenada can begin to make head way in the dynamic and competitive tourism industry.
“We have a lot of catching up to do, but with the establishment of this new Authority a greater focus will be placed on development of the sector and we will be able to take advantage of many opportunities in the tourism sector that, to date, we have failed to really capitalize on,” he said.
While the work on the transition intensifies, Otway-Noel said that tourism business is not on hold.
“Tourism is ongoing. We have flights coming in; we have hotel rooms to fill, so we have to make sure that we do this in a very succinct way, because tourism continues,” she emphasised.