November 29, 2020

TCI’s tourism team attends CTO’s conference in Grenada

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By Olivia Rose From Turks & Caicos Weekly

TOURISM Minister Ralph Higgs lead a delegation to the () annual State of the Industry Conference in the ‘Spice Island’ recently.
During the five day conference, held from October 9 to 13 in Grenada, a number of high profile speakers delivered remarks on best practices, current trends in tourism and what vacationers are looking for now and in the future.
This year’s conference was held under the theme, ‘Super-charging the Caribbean brand: Meeting the needs of the new explorers.’
According to a press release from the ministry, following the passage of hurricanes Irma and Maria which affected several countries and territories across the region, the CTO added to its programme a special session which focused on recovering and rebuilding.
These sessions zeroed in on the economic cost of disasters, employment, the cost to rebuild and the recovery time from leading experts.
A staple on the programme was the highly anticipated Caribbean Tourism Youth Congress during which the TCI was represented by Zaria Ingham, Junior Minister of Tourism.
Commenting on the visit Higgs said: “Although we did not secure the top prize in the competition, did an amazing job representing Turks and Caicos.
“I must commend her on an outstanding performance, she was well-prepared and poised
presenting on the indigenous rock iguanas.”
He noted that this year’s conference came at a particularly significant time since the region recently endured two devastating hurricanes.
“It was important for us as policy makers and tourism professionals to assemble in an effort to share our stories and garner support,” he said.
“Like some of our neighbours, we also used the opportunity to spread the message, that we are open for business.”
The TCI’s delegation, which consisted of , Head of Secretariat Mellisa Ariza, Training Manager Blythe Clare and Junior Minister of Tourism Zaria Ingham, participated in various sessions.
They included Spicing up the Caribbean Brand, Active Engagement-Riding the Technological Wave, and Identifying the New Explorers.
The Caribbean Tourism Youth Congress featured the National Junior Ministers of Tourism comprising of students between the ages of 14 and 17 from several CTO member countries.
Participants debated on prominent tourism issues, sharing their vision for the future direction of regional tourism.
CTO’s State of the Industry Conference is the Caribbean Tourism Organisation’s annual assembly where Caribbean tourism practitioners, policy makers and strategic partners, at the highest levels, gather to discuss issues, identify solutions and generally develop courses of action that will benefit the tourism industry in the Caribbean.
The organisation provides specialised support and technical assistance in sustainable tourism development, marketing, communications, advocacy, human resource development, event planning and execution, and research and information technology.
IMAGE: Ralph Higgs
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