New Tourism Markets Not An Immediate Priority

Tourism Minister Otway-Noel and GHTA president Ian Dabreo
Tourism Minister Otway-Noel and GHTA president Ian Dabreo
GHTA president Ian DaBreo and Tourism Minister Alexandria Otway–Noel

Tourism Minister Alexandria Otway–Noel has indicated that the establishing new markets for Grenada’s tourism products will not be an immediate priority for the Grenada Tourism Authority which came into effect on 2 January, but instead will focus on developing, strengthening and building its existing markets.

“Focusing on developing a new market comes with many changes but it’s not something we will ignore. However, right now I believe we will focus on the markets that we know and we will do that well,” she told members of the media on Friday during a news conference where they were updated on the present status of the Grenada Tourism Authority.

Using the Brazilian market as an example, the Tourism Minister said that focusing on that market will involve not just adapting brochures into Portuguese language, other things as well. “For example , Brazilians have dinner at 10 pm while our restaurants close at 10 pm. It means that to enter that market will require our hospitality staff to understand that difference in culture,” she said. “It will also require us to teach our hospitality staff the language to communicate with them, so getting into a new market is not just getting into it. That action comes with a lot of other changes,” she added.

Otway–Noel said that priority will be given to the existing North American, Canadian, United Kingdom and European markets, as well as the Caricom market which she described as a captive audience. “Right next door we have a captive audience, so we will be focusing on bringing them to Grenada,” she said.

Among the products identified for development with collaboration with the private sector, are the eco and adventure tourism attractions. “We want people who come and enjoy the destination to come and only leave their footprints,” she said.

President of the Grenada Hotel and Tourism Association, Ian DaBreo, was high in praise for the realisation of the Authority, as his membership believes that this is way to go for the development of the tourism industry in Grenada.

“This is a timely and positive sign and we believe that it will be work in the best interest of the industry,” she said.

 by Linda Straker

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