The Unity Labour Party Manifesto 2015
Table of Contents
Tourism has become the major economic sector in St. Vincent and the Grenadines in terms of foreign exchange earnings, private and public sector investment, and as a significant employee of labour, including a provider of quality jobs. The global economic downturn, in recent years, the rising cost of fuel, limited air access, and expensive air travel have caused a slow-down in some categories of tourism arrivals, but overall the prospects are upbeat. St. Vincent and the Grenadines as a tourism destination combines a wide admixture of quality products available for stay-over visitors, yachting arrivals, cruise ship passengers, excursionists, marine tourism, and nature/culture tourism.
Our government’s comprehensive Tourism Sector Plan and its accompanying Work Plan delineate at least eight STRATEGIC INTERVENTIONS in tourism:
- Increasing the awareness of the value of the tourism industry to St. Vincent and the Grenadines;
- Elaborating further a comprehensive marketing strategy that capitalises on the diverse characteristics of our multi-island tourism destination;
- Strengthening the linkages between tourism and other sectors of the economy;
- Increasing the capacity for tourism and the quality of the tourism plant;
- Developing a more authentic tourism product that protects the environment and utilises, as far as practicable, local inputs;
- Facilitating the development of quality small hotels, guesthouses, apartments, and ancillary facilities owned and managed by local entrepreneurs;
- Facilitating further viable foreign direct investment in the tourism sector, including the attracting of international “name-brands”;
- Improving the skills base and training at all levels of the tourism and hotel industry.
In its fourth term, the ULP administration will:
✔ Commence the operation shortly of the modern, historic Argyle International Airport which will revolutionise our tourism industry and spur further investment in it;
✔ Encourage, through practical incentives, more than ever the development of quality small hotels, guest houses and apartments, owned and managed by Vincentians;
✔ Facilitate further foreign direct investment in quality hotels, resorts, and tourism facilities at Mt. Wynne/Peters’ Hope, in Bequia, Canouan, Union Island, and Mayreau. The Canouan Developers have resumed the hotel/houses/villas development and the Marina and Real Estate development. The multi-million dollar (US $250 million) Mt. Wynne/Peters’ Hope hotel development project is on its way. The investment at Buccament Resort is consolidating and expanding. Other hotel/resort projects are underway, including a proposal for an urban hotel in Kingstown;
✔ Encourage further the development of apartments to accommodate the some 1,000 overseas students at the four Medical Schools; this student population is growing annually;
✔ Enhance existing efforts at marketing St. Vincent and the Grenadines as a tourism destination through the Tourism Authority, Invest SVG, and the private sector;
✔ Facilitate the development of a hotel and entertainment complex at the proposed modern city at Arnos Vale;
✔ Build a board walk and Cultural Centre at the Kingstown Waterfront as part of making Kingstown more attractive to locals and visitors alike;
✔ Develop the Villa waterfront;
✔ Ensure continued, and improved, management of the Tobago Cays through its Marine Park Board, and a host of other tourism sites by the National Parks Authority;
✔ Upgrade further the SVG Tourism Authority so as to boost tourism marketing and research, and to monitor and improve standards in the hotel and tourism industry.