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Seychelles admitted as member of the “East-3-Route” initiative of Africa

Seychelles admitted as member of the “East-3-Route” initiative of Africa (Forimmediaterelease.net) In February this year, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, Mr. Alain St.Ange, opened discussions with Minister Michael Mabuyakhulu, the Minister for Economic Development&Tourism of the Kwazulu-Natal Provincial Government of South Africa, to be considered for admission as a member of the “East-3-Route” initiative of Africa.

The “East-3-Route” initiative was a grouping of KwaZulu Natal of South Africa, Swaziland, and Mozambique and was spearheaded by former President Nelson Mandela of South Africa, President Joaquim Chissano of Mozambique, and His Majesty the King of Swaziland, in1998 with a view in particular of promoting eco-tourism development, capitalizing on the region’s exciting topographical landmarks, and emphasizing the existing blend of cultural and historical heritage.

During the course of Tourism Indaba, held in May 2011, the KwaZulu Natal Provincial Government’s MEC for Economic Development and Tourism in KaZulu Natal, Mr. Michael Mabuyakhulu, met in Durban with both Mozambique’s Minister of Tourism and Swaziland’s Minister of Tourism and Environmental Affairs. During this watershed meeting, the parties agreed on the need for a three-country cooperation regarding issues relating to tourism. The three ministers met again in September 2011 in Maputo in Mozambique. Accordingly on 26th September 26, 2011, a tripartite economic and tourism development initiative, featuring KwaZulu Natal, Mozambique, and Swaziland, brought into being the “East-3-Route.”

The focal point of this three-way initiative was to provide both tourists and investors an opportunity to explore offerings within this unique triple setting. Ministers Carvalho Muaria of Mozambique; Minister Mduduzi Dlamini of Swaziland; and Minister Michael Mabuyakhulu, the Minister for Economic Development&Tourism of the Kwazulu-Natal Provincial Government of South Africa, moved to become proactive with different action plans and to increase visibility of their initiative of Africa.

In February 2013, Minister Alain St.Ange of the Seychelles, who was on a working visit attending the TAFI Conference in Durban South Africa, presented a case to the “East-3-Route” 3-member group to admit Seychelles as the fourth member of the initiative, and after deliberations by tourism ministers of the three member states, it was agreed to invite Seychelles to be present for the May 12 meeting of “East-3-Route.”

It was Minister Michael Mabuyakhulu, the Minister for Economic Development&Tourism of the Kwazulu-Natal Provincial Government of South Afric, who welcomed Minister St.Ange of the Seychelles at the Minister’s Summit in Durban. Minister Mabuyakhulu said that together they shall grow their tourism industries.

Seychelles is the one country of Africa that remains totally dependent on tourism as the industry referred to as the pillar of its economy. The Seychelles Minister said that it is more evident today than ever before that no country can be an island unto himself. “We all need to work in harmony and with collaboration as our guiding frame of mind. This is why Minister, after listening to you explain the ‘East-3-Route’ initiative we, as your African islands sitting in the Indian Ocean, we thank you for welcoming Seychelles to play its part in this African cooperation network for the consolidation of our very own development and in so doing for our continent’s tourism industry and trade,” Minister Alain St.Ange of the Seychelles said.

The Seychelles Tourism Minister went on to say: “Ministers, as small as we are, we remain committed to the continued development of tourism on our continent and in our region. We depend on tourism, the industry that remains the pillar of our economy, and we remain willing to work with like-minded partners for the benefit of each and everyone involved,” Minister Alain St.Ange said.

MEDIA CONTACT: seychellesupdatednews@googlemail.com

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