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Seychelles Minister talks to the press about the World Tourism Forum in Lucerne, Switzerland

Seychelles Minister talks to the press about the World Tourism Forum in Lucerne, Switzerland ( Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, answered questions from the European press on his participation at the third World Tourism Forum Lucerne [ ] which will be taking place from April 17-19, 2013.

The European Press has listed the confirmed list of top known tourism executives who are traveling to Lucerne for this forum. The likes of Michael Frenzel, Chairman, WTTC; Christopher Rodrigues, Chairman, VisitBritain; Tom Windmuller, Corporate Secretary, IATA; Tom King, Senior Vice President, British Airways; Bjornar Tretterud, CEO, First Hotels; Garry White, CEO, European Cities Marketing; Martin Craigs, CEO, PATA; Gilles Despas, CEO, HolidayCheck; Ami Federmann, Chairman, Dan Hotels; Samih Sawiris, Chairman, Orascom Development Holdings; Reto Wittwer, President, Kempinski; Thea Chiesa, Director, World Economic Forum; and Vijay Poonoosamy, Vice President International&Public Affairs, Etihad Airways will all be working on new and on more sustainable business models in travel, tourism, and hospitality, together with Ministers of Tourism: Olga Kefalogianni from Greece, Marthinus van Schalkwyk from South Africa, and Alain St.Ange from the Seychelles.

The World Tourism Forum Lucerne says that global leaders in tourism, travel, and hospitality will have the opportunity to meet and share with the next generation.

When questioned how a Minister from a small group of islands in the Indian Ocean is invited to sit with the top known tourism executives of the world, Alain St.Ange, the Minister from the Seychelles, said that Seychelles continues to present the case of a country dependent on tourism and one where the government knows that they are not allowed to fail.

“We have tourism as the pillar of our economy. We are, therefore, just not allowed to fail. Tourism is so important for our country and for its people that it is today regarded as being the responsibility of every government Minister, of every Principle Secretary, and of every Director General in the government’s administration. Today we can say that he who acts irresponsibly, vis-a-vis our country’s tourism industry, will have to answer for their actions,” the Seychelles Minister said.

When asked about the Seychelles that is now seen, since the last couple of years, on speaker circuits and in key tourism forums in the four corners of the world, Minister Alain St.Ange said that for him to spread the name Seychelles in key tourism markets, he needs to be seen on the international scene. “It is useless for me as Tourism Minister to be office based. This will never raise the visibility of Seychelles, and this will result with our islands loosing relevancy, because we shall slide away from the traveling public’s eye. But traveling to these world forums, and to be a speaker on important circuits needs to be accompanied by a meet the press session. We have to use these sorties as opportunities to meet the press and to make sure that the word Seychelles is heard as being the appealing tourism destination.

“We cannot afford to be advertising our islands through paid pages because we just do not have such budgets. We have succeeded so far by using the press to spread our message, and this approach is always more productive because it is a journalist who is saying what he or she feels instead of us saying we exist. This is why we need to be at key events, forums, and be on important tourism industry’s speaker circuits,” the Seychelles Minister said.

The Minister also said that Seychelles will be in Lucerne in Switzerland because they remain a serious member of the UNWTO (UN World Tourism Organization) and because sitting with the published list of World Tourism Executives is a must if they will remain ahead of the pack in tourism planning and promotion.

Minister Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, has said that he will meet the press when in Lucerne to spell out the benefits for Seychelles by his presence in Switzerland.

PHOTO: Seychelles Minister for Tourism&Culture Alain St.Ange / Photo from Seychelles Ministry of Tourism and Culture


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