Former Minister of Tourism of the Seychelles and candidate for the post of SG of the WTO
Your resignation surprised more than one at the very moment when your portfolio was expanded. Why this decision now?
The ministerial reshuffle that took place came just when I had to submit my nomination papers. My application was presented in January in Madrid at the Tourism Fair.
I now begin the meeting of the nations of the community of nations to ensure their support.
I will not be in the Seychelles and then impossible to navigate my boat as I had done in the last few years.
My resignation did not really surprise me because everyone here was expecting it so that I could move forward to try to win these elections next May.
How will your nomination and possible appointment to the post of Secretary-General of the UNWTO be beneficial to the Seychelles and the Indian Ocean region?
The post of Secretary-General of UNWTO is the summit of the global tourism industry. If it is a Seychellois who occupies it, it gives credibility to the country. But the region is also highlighted, the Vanilla Islands will also benefit. Our continent will also be brought to the fore.
You have been an ardent defender of a collaboration between the islands of the southwest Indian Ocean, notably through the Vanilla Islands association. What future for the Association after your departure and also that of the Mauritian Minister of Tourism?
The partnership that exists between our islands is now well-founded with the clear modus operandi between our islands and our islands.
Mauritius had tutorship last year and now it is the Comoros who are in the presidency. We have an efficient and capable secretariat, with an executive chef managing the office.
The record for Seychellois tourism is a total success. I leave the post with the heart clear. I have done much and always with passion and sincerity. The Seychelles have seen a remarkable increase in the numbers of arrivals month after month and year after year since I took the post of Minister of Tourism.
Today, the Seychellois are involved in tourism not just as employees, but also as small or large investors. They believed in me and worked with me to “claim back” their tourism to the Seychelles. Tourism is working, the country’s economy is doing well because tourism remains the mainstay of the economy.
How do you see the future development of tourism in the archipelago and in the region?
The region and the Seychelles archipelago must follow the already well-marked road; Work in cooperation and grow the tourism cake of the Indian Ocean. Alone, an island remains an island, but a region has weight and becomes a new destination.