CARIBBEAN TOURISM MONTH 2014
OFFICIAL MESSAGE BY
HON. RICHARD SEALY
CHAIRMAN, CARIBBEAN TOURISM ORGANIZATION
THEME: ONE SEA, ONE VOICE, ONE CARIBBEAN
For 30 days commencing 1 November, CTO member countries will celebrate Caribbean Tourism Month under the theme One Sea, One Voice, One Caribbean’. It is a period during which we focus attention internally – our people, our product, our profile and our partnerships – as much as we do externally. It is a period during which we engage in activities collectively and individually that involve the people of the Caribbean, to remind every Caribbean national that tourism is critical to the region. It’s a period during which we remind the world that every member has something different to offer, every experience is a unique experience, but that, as the Caribbean, we are a strong, powerful, desirable brand.
Caribbean Tourism Month gives everyone in the industry an opportunity to open their doors to citizens and to help understand and appreciate tourism, to help them feel that they too are part of the industry, that they are impacted by the industry, that they have a role to play in the growth of the industry.
The Month also gives us a chance to look inwards at our approach to tourism, at the quality of our product, at the strategies we employ in managing this vital sector. Indeed, this is an ideal time to look at current world trends and find the opportunities to keep pace with the rest of the world.
The statistics provided by the CTO’s research department show that arrivals to the Caribbean are up for the first half of this year. While this is encouraging, we cannot be satisfied, we must all tell ourselves that we are yet to achieve our goal.
Not only must we keep pace with the rest of the world consistently, we must aim to out-grow the rest of the world. In order to achieve this, in order to remain competitive, in order to realize our vision of positioning the Caribbean as the world’s most desirable, year round, warm weather destination, we must combine the efforts of all stake-holders, public sector and private sector, those who contribute directly and those who do indirectly, tourism workers and the general population. Our success will depend on strong relationships within the travel trade, solid public relations approaches, sound bonds with our citizens and strong regulatory and policy support at the national level. For it is by our combined efforts that can ensure that tourism benefits our countries, our communities, our constituencies.
This Caribbean Tourism Month we at the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) salute all industry partners and the people of the Caribbean who make our visitors feel so at home, so comfortable, so welcome. As you gear up for what is shaping up to be a winter of recovery, we toast all workers for your unswerving commitment to tourism. Let’s us continue to press toward the mark of excellence recognizing that together we can be the leading warm weather destination in the world.
Happy Caribbean Tourism Month.