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By Alain St.Ange of SAINT ANGE CONSULTANCY
The Editorial this week highlights:-
a. 2020 starts with challenging events – Seychelles enters election mode for coming Presidential elections, recent shark attack on Praslin, Mauritius forced to halt air traffic as cyclone Calvina approaches, Madagascar loses interlining agreement with Air Mauritius, Air Seychelles passengers enroute to Reunion via Mauritius cannot check-in straight through, tension in Middle East & GCC region / oil prices go up.
b. My End of Year Message. c. Congratulations to Manuel Marrero Cruz named Prime Minister of Cuba.
d. Uganda Tourism Trade event – The Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo (POATE) (still some room for hosted buyers from the Continent).
e. Tourism in Kenya embracing personalised tourism – Caroline Wanjiru Njoroge (Mum) leading the way.
f. Birthday of the late Karl St.Ange.
Stand alone articles this week:-
1. “Nothing pleases me more than the tide of change and awareness of our footprint on the environment” – Denis Private Island in Seychelles leads the way .
2. Creole Travel Services at La Digue has a new look.
3. Maxime Rachel is General Manage of the high end boutique Property in Sri Lanka called Haritha Villas + Spa.
4. New major road in Reunion shows island’s planning for future growth.
5. Germany extends financial support for wildlife conservation in Tanzania.
6. Seychelles Tourism Board staff movement for 2020.
7. Seychelles wins KSA Arabian Business Awards’ Destination of the Year.
8. Busy year for SUNx says Geoffrey Lipman.
9. Suzy with her Seychelles Island Tours working comfortably alongside DMCs.
10. Vanilla Islands’ third edition Pro Am Golf Tournament a success.
11. Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus, Creole – Pouldo) nest and chicks on Cousin Island Special Reserve.
12. Reunion Island successfully celebrated its 20 December Freedom of Slaves event.
13. Closing Notes.
2020 starts with challenging events
Welcome to 2020! A new year with new challenges for Seychelles and for the world of tourism as a whole.
Firstly 2020 will see Seychelles cruise into election mode from very early as the Political Parties will launch their campaign for the coming Presidential elections. Indications are for an end August or early September elections to ensure that all is done before the end of the current mandate of the sitting President.
The recent shark attack that took place on Praslin island as a visitor was enjoying an early evening swim has made news headlines right around the world; a sad and rare shark attack resulted in her arm being amputated. Nature comes with its own challenges, but seeing a shark so close to the beach shows that either the shark population is increasing, or that potentially overfishing has resulted in reduced food stock for our larger predators, brining them coming closer to shore for their meals
Our experts are no doubt discussing the incident and analysing the cause for what happened, but one thing we can do and should be doing, is ensuring positive news about Seychelles, its key USPs and new attractions are given greater visibility, especially when an incident occurs that challenges the status quo.
On their part Mauritius was forced to halt air traffic as cyclone Calvinia was approaching as was announced during the last days of 2019. This affected Flights from Mauritius’ main airport to Rodrigues, and all flights into and out of the island following the closure of the international airport. Tropical cyclone Calvinia passed the island with wind speeds of between 111 and 129 miles per hour, making it a category 3 cyclone.
For Madagascar it was being discussed that Air Madagascar had reportedly lost the interlining agreement with Air Mauritius.
Air Seychelles continues to suffer with passengers connecting through Mauritius enroute to Reunion as they cannot check-in their luggage all the way through and need to complete immigration and custom formalities in Mauritius and then recheck in again for an Air Austral onward flight. Three Vanilla Islands still cannot cooperate to promote two or three island combination is a real let down to the region’s tourism industry.
The second challenge for the tourism industry as a whole is the recent escalation of tension in the Middle East and the GCC region where the military head of Iran lost his life. Seychelles like many tourism dependent countries have important airlift stock form and through that region that connects them and us to major tourism source markets. We can all pray that the situation does not escalate further. Oil prices are already going up and may be the start of trying moments for everyone.
My End of Year Message
As 2019 draws to a close, the hardships that the year has brought and Seychellois have endured cannot be overlooked. On my campaign trails I have seen much suffering which would open the eyes of many to the glaring disparity between the haves and the have-nots in Seychelles, including a struggling mother sharing a tin of old sardines with her children. As the saga between the Legislative and Executive continues to be dragged out and point-scoring is rampant, this poor woman continues to stress about feeding her children, and her basic needs are not being met. There is so much more that can be done for families such as this, so much more that is owed to her.
This new year is bringing with it a chance for us to give Seychelles a renewed purpose, and a real change.
As President of the One Seychelles Party, I would sincerely like to express my heartfelt thanks to all party members, supporters and also the citizens of this beautiful country who are steadfastly working towards a brighter future for our children and grandchildren. I would like to thank you all for your support, inspiring devotion, perseverance, determination and commitment.
Despite the many challenges that come with being the Third Force which dares to stand up against two well-funded parties, we will persevere in the fight to make Seychelles the One Seychelles that we need it to be.
Let us take a moment to reflect on the state of our nation, the state of our health and education systems, on law and order, our various economic sectors as well as the decisions that our present leaders are taking. Are these decisions the right ones for the people of Seychelles? Are we creating the future that we desperately need? Do we still want to keep living on false hopes and promises?
To those who are frustrated and have had enough with waiting for housing assistance, to single parents who are seeking assistance and are being refused, to all those earning below the stated poverty line and to those who are trying to make ends meet while some are benefiting from the same State resources with big salaries, is this what you want for the coming years?
Each citizen of this country has an important role to play in the Nation’s progress. We deserve to have a rightful place in the centre of the country’s development and future plans.
There is a need for us to reinforce law and order, peace and security for both our people and visitors to our shores. It is time to adopt measures to legalise medicinal marijuana, to ensure an incorruptible and truly independent judiciary by making them financially autonomous, to bolster Seychelles">Seychellois workers by ending preferential treatment of foreign workers over them, to put an end to monopolies which are crippling upcoming businesspeople, and discuss social issues that are truly affecting our society and are creating a negative impact on our economy.
The time has come to quit talking and debating, and to start taking real actions to address these issues and protect our economy. On behalf of the One Seychelles">Seychelles Party, I would like to reaffirm that we will keep on striving to bring the changes we need and that the People have been begging for for years.
We ask all those who want to see poverty alleviation become a reality, prosperity, peace, a reduction in the cost of living, modernised education and health systems, a defined action plan on how to tackle the social ills affecting our communities, join us and together let us make these goals a reality.
I pray that this festive season will be a time where we do reflect and make good decisions for our people, our children, our struggling elderly citizens, our unemployed youths, our under appreciated workforce and the future generations.
For those of you who are suffering, I pray that you will not give up hope. I pray that you will be given courage, strength and perseverance to see you through the coming year, which promises increased taxes and higher costs of living.
I wish all our members and supporters as well as the people of Seychelles a Happy and Prosperous New Year. Let it be the year of change.
Congratulations to Manuel Marrero Cruz named Prime Minister of Cuba
Cuba’s former Tourism Minister, Manuel Marrero Cruz is now the Prime Minister of Cuba. The world of tourism as a whole appreciated working alongside Manuel Marrero Cruz when he was the island’s Tourism Minister. He defended his country with vigour and promoted it as the new tourism destination. As the Seychelles Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine I got to know Manuel Marrero Cruz well and respected his ability as the Cuba’s face around the world.
Today I join the many who knew and appreciated Manuel Marrero Cruz to say congratulations in his new position and to wish him success as the new Prime Minister of Cuba.
Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel has appointed the country’s first prime minister in more than 40 years – the tourism minister, Manuel Marrero Cruz.
The post of prime minister was scrapped in 1976 by the then revolutionary leader Fidel Castro.
It was reinstated under the rules of a new constitution for the communist-run island passed earlier this year.
Mr Marrero, 56, will take on some of the responsibilities that currently fall to the president.
“The head of government will be the administrative right hand of the president of the republic,” state-run online news outlet Cubadebate said.
However, critics say any such changes are purely cosmetic as the Cuban Communist Party and the military remain the only two real decision-making institutions on the island.
How was the new PM appointed?
Mr Marrero’s appointment was ratified unanimously by deputies in the National Assembly on Saturday.
The state newspaper Granma described Mr Marrero as a politician who had emerged “from the base” of the tourism industry, one of Cuba’s main sources of foreign exchange.
In 2000 he was made president of the military-run Gaviota tourism group, whose hotels are subject to US sanctions under the Trump administration.
Mr Marrero was named tourism minister in 2004 by Fidel Castro and has since overseen a major boost in tourism to the island.
It is unclear if he will now remain head of the ministry.
Source:- BBC News
Uganda Tourism Trade event – The Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo (POATE)
(still some room for hosted buyers from the Continent)
The 4th to the 6th of February will see Africa move to showcase to the world of tourism its unique tourism attractions and all the new developments of the continent and of the continent’s islands.
This comes as Uganda moves to a position as a premier tourist destination, Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) it will host the 5th annual Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo (POATE 2020).
POATE is a tourism and travel trade exhibition which brings together regional and international tour operators, travel agents, destination agencies and various players in the tourism trade to network and facilitate tourism business.
The three-day expo will run from 4-6 February 2020 and will be held at the Speke Resort in Munyonyo.
POATE 2020 will integrate business to business (B2B) and business to consumer (B2C) trade event format under the theme “Inspiring high-value engagement to promote intra-Africa travel for leisure, business and adventure”, aimed at raising Uganda’s profile as a preferred destination in the region and internationally.
When he launched the event, the Uganda State Minister for Tourism Wildlife and Antiquities Godfrey Kiwanda noted the Uganda Tourism Board’s focus on Intra – Africa travel.
He said, “Tourism has long been advocated as an alternative strategy for economic development and social reconstruction.
“The focus on Intra – Africa travel during this expo and beyond is aimed to increase the number of African arrivals to Uganda. With the revival of the Uganda Airlines, regional connectivity is easier and this among others will allow for Intra – Africa travel to thrive.”
UTB Board Chairman, Daudi Migereko noted that POATE was a strategic avenue to market and promote the country to a group of select hosted buyers in a broader goal to increase tourist arrivals to Uganda as per the UTB strategic plan.
“Trade expos have been to drive high-value engagement and the focus on Africa is timely for Uganda given the recent interest of travellers on the continent.
Lilly Ajarova, the UTB CEO said that POATE is one of the key strategies for the promotion of Uganda’s tourism in the region and across the world. The expo facilitates key linkages through hosted buyers between tourists and our domestic tour operators.
Furthermore, it allows Uganda to showcase directly to various groups of hosted buyers who play a key role in the increment of visitor arrivals.
“On a weeklong FAM trip, we shall host and showcase to hosted buyers to some of Uganda’s unique experiences and gems and ensure a rich and memorable experience so they get a hands-on sense of Uganda as a tourist destination.
“Hosted buyers will include tour agents, travel media, hoteliers; among others and over 70 hosted buyers are expected from Uganda’s key source markets such as Africa, North America, Canada, UK, Germany, Switzerland, among others,” Ajarova noted.
The first two days of the event will constitute seminars and workshops, B2B meetings and conferences while the last day will be open to the public for B2C engagements between the public and attending exhibitors and hosted buyers.
Commenting on the same, Pearl Horeau, the President of the Uganda Tourism Association and a young Seychellois at the same time said that the expo will present an exciting opportunity for tourism private sector to network and develop their tourism and travel business directly.
“As the private sector, we are positive about the potential business that POATE will bring to Uganda. The focus on the African market is a step in the right direction as the continent provides a number of opportunities for intra-travel trade evidenced by the number of African tourist coming to Uganda and other countries.” Horeau said.
Source:- EABW Digital
Tourism in Kenya embracing personalised tourism
– Caroline Wanjiru Njoroge (Mum) leading the way
A recent Aviation Conference in Mombasa saw conference delegates discussing the personalised service being offered by Kenyans to their visitors wanting to discover the best of Kenya as soon through the eyes of a Kenyan tourism professional.
A private run to a game reserve to admire the big game, a run to a restaurant to appreciate the Kenyan delicacies of just a safe trip to discover Kenyan arts and craft accompanied by a local with contacts and providing what is so much sought after ‘safety and security’. Delegates at the Mombasa conference spoke about Caroline Wanjiru Njoroge or just simply Mum as she was being recommended to one and other.
The PrideInn Hotel of Mombasa must know that they fell on a gem by having this dedicated Kenyan operating from their property. She proudly promotes the hotel and the restaurants and other facilities of the hotel as she moves guests around. What this tourism personality is doing is what is seen as the real future for Kenyan tourism. Personalised service at the door of tourism establishments guaranteeing safety and security is a winner.
Caroline Wanjiru Njoroge or Mum has two vehicles in her “Nadine Car Service” Business and expects to grow further as business opportunities come her way.
Birthday of the late Karl St.Ange
Cover of Book on the life of Karl St.Ange
The 31st December every year is for the St.Ange family a moment of reflection as we all prepare for celebrating New Year’s Eve and welcome in the new year. This year has been no different.
Karl St.Ange who was born on 31st December 1919 sadly passed away on the 7th May 2009.
In 2011 a book dedicated to the St.Ange family and to his many friends was published with the message “Cherish his memories as he valued your affection”.
We miss you our dear Dad who is no longer around us, but who is not forgotten.
It is important to again acknowledge all who are diligently re-posting the Saint Ange Tourism Report weekly. Our Report ranges far and wide, from Australia to the Americas, from the Indian Ocean Vanilla islands to Africa & Asian and Greater Europe, with your continued support, which is greatly appreciated. You are helping us to grow from strength to strength with each new Edition.
Enjoy the read,
Saint Ange Consultancy