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Seychelles tourism industry chairman reports on state of affairs

Seychelles tourism industry chairman reports on state of affairs ( The following statement has been released by Louis D'Offay, chairman of the Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association, on the state of affairs of the tourism industry in his country:

“A new board of directors for the Seychelles Tourism Industry's Association was elected last week. In the next issue of our Tourism Industry Speaks at the end of June, we shall bring you a report of the Annual General Meeting (AGM) and of the elections for our board of directors, but I still want to use this opportunity to say a big thank you to all our members who made the effort to attend the AGM 2010 in large numbers. They traveled from Praslin and La Digue, and they drove from all over Mahe to show their appreciation for the new drive behind the country's tourism industry.

“This month of June will see Seychelles overtaken, as it does every year in June, by the many public holidays. But this is June, and it is holiday season in Seychelles with a series of National Days. We hope that our visitors will be encouraged to partake in the celebrations and see our people in the peak of their celebratory mood. We shall also be welcoming to Seychelles the World famous Mr. Yuri Bashmet. This great Russian classical music giant will be on tour in our islands. His visit was made possible by the spirit of partnership that today exists in Seychelles between the government and our industry's private sector. We discussed with the Tourism Board, and we need to say a special thank you to everyone helping out to make this ‘Bashmet Tour’ a possibility. The ‘Bashmet Tour’ will be followed by ‘a big surprise’ to coincide with the national day celebrations. As chairman of the country's tourism industry, I take comfort at seeing these new developments which will bring enjoyment to both our people and also present to our visitors a new activity for their enjoyment. Our association has worked closely alongside the Tourism Board to make both these events a reality, and we can say that we are playing our part in what we say is our social responsibility.

“Our association's visit to La Digue and Praslin last month brought to the table the feeling of our island-based members, and also highlighted their expectations. We thank all those who made time to join us on both islands for these meetings. We have since followed up with the Tourism Board, and soon we shall be back to table to you the new marketing approach for the islands. We are your association, and we shall continue to work with you to ensure that your association and the Tourism Board hear your concerns and develops strategies that will be best suited to your aspirations and to your needs.

“As we encourage the arrival of new hotels, we want to re-echo our appeal to the government to bring our CEO on the country's Planning Board. We are mandated to continue to defend the country's tourism industry, and we find it unacceptable to only hear on new properties when they break ground. We need to be part of the deliberations in planning the growth of our industry and being part of the Planning Authority will ensure our members are updated on what is going to mushroom next door to them and get their feelings back to government if we feel that the new projects are going against the spirit of our industry's growth. This will also enable us to take to task the growing number of illegal accommodation operators. They are today undermining the foundation of our industry. They have become bold and even have web site[s] to advertise and promote their illegal hotels. Yet the appropriate authority does not move to take legal action before these accommodation names become more known. We need to now appeal to the government to mandate someone to clamp down on these 'gangsters' and bring in the necessary laws to impose fines that will be a deterrent for those foreigners out for a quick kill. We shall support the government rid Seychelles of such unwanted settlers as soon as a new appropriate working frame work is put into place.

“That will be all for today. June will bring in further changes for our industry and together we shall join in to welcome such changes in our June issue of our Tourism Industry Speaks."

Alain St. Ange Seychelles Director of Tourism Marketing Email:

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