St. Maarten and Liat plan major shopping initiative for regional travellers

POSTED: 10/4/11 12:36 PM

GREAT BAY/ST. JOHN’S – A mixed delegation of St. Maarten’s public and private sector led by Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Traffic and Telecommunications Franklin Meyers has agreed a plan of action to promote St. Maarten’s role as a major eastern Caribbean shopping destination. The specifics will be worked out in a follow-up meeting set to take place in a few days time.

Secretary General in that Ministry Miguel de Weever, Director of Tourism May-Ling Chun and senior representatives from the St. Maarten Hospitality & Trade Association (SHTA) and the Chamber of Commerce attended the meeting on March 30 with Liat’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Brian Challenger, the Directors of Ground Operations and Cargo & Quikpak, the Company’s Commercial Office and the Liat St. Maarten airport office.

The overall goal of the plan is to lower the cost of shopping in St. Maarten for regional travelers by reducing air fares and having discounted shopping, car rentals, hotel accommodation and restaurants.

Meyers offered government’s commitment to the initiative and said launching it now is opportune because people are beginning to prepare to do their Christmas shopping. The program may be extended to other periods after that.

The idea for the new initiative first came up at the recent Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) State of the Industry Conference, which identified the need for promoting inter-regional travel and the importance of forging strategic partnerships in this regard.

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