SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - The St. Maarten Carnival Development Foundation (SCDF) met with Minister of Tourism Roger Lawrence on Wednesday to present him with the foundation’s COVID-19 safety plan for Carnival 2022 and discuss several aspects of Carnival for which they would like to build a stronger relationship with regards to the tourism sector.
The foundation is continuing with its preparations for Carnival 2022 and thought it was vital to meet with the new Minister to exchange ideas and discuss the future of the festival. “We were happy to get the opportunity to meet with Minister Lawrence since Carnival falls under his Ministry. It was an open and positive discussion upon which we will build going forward,” SCDF President Alston Lourens said.
Along with the COVID-19 safety plan, the foundation also presented the Minister with its marketing plans, an outline of how Carnival and Tourism compliments each other, the Carnival 2022 budget and the financials from the last Carnival year (2019). The foundation is also looking forward to meeting with the Minister again together with the St. Maarten Tourism Bureau.
Lourens said he was happy to note that Minister Lawrence fully grasps Carnival on a socio-economic level as well. “Carnival generates business opportunities for singers, song writers, choreographers, costume builders and designers, makeup artists and musicians, to name a few. Even more importantly Carnival has driven the growth and development of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), many of which are skills-based services. What is often overlooked is the economic significance of Carnival to the economy, businesses and regular people who depend on the festival. This recognition is needed in order that this valuable and unique facet of the St. Maarten’s culture can reach its full potential,” Lourens said.
He added that the SCDF will be making several major announcements in the coming days including the launch of the Carnival 2022 schedule and releasing the COVID-19 safety plan to the public.