MARIGOT–President of the Collectivité Daniel Gibbs gave tourism partners and business professionals the first insight into his ten-year tourism strategy for St. Martin at a meeting in Le Beach Hotel.
The presentation was made with his two Vice-Presidents –Valérie Damaseau, who is President of the St. Martin Tourism Office, and Yawo Nyuiadzi.
The Collectivité noted in its release, the first tourism strategy was initiated in 2010, however, since his election Gibbs’s new tourism strategy is based on sustainable development of this one-pillar economy.
After preparing a fiscal audit that will begin in the last quarter of 2017 and voting a budget of an additional six million euros for several key projects, the President and his team have worked on the main areas of economic policy, in particular tourism strategy which is part of sustainability with a plan of action over 10 years (2017-2027).
As indicated by the President, “sustainable development is development that meets the needs of present generations without compromising the ability of future generations.”
The goal is to initiate tourism at the service of St. Martiners and St. Martin with built-in sustainability criteria such as respect for ecology, economic viability, and the ethical and social equity for populations.
The President spoke of the urgent need to structure the destination, this strategy framework having been built around carefully considered actions encompassing all Collectivité policies i.e.: employment, urban planning, education, safety of the environment, in accordance with the general interest.
The 10-year plan will also reassure local and foreign investors on the legal security of the chosen directions.
Once the strategy has been validated by the Territorial Council in September 2017, a Tourism Council and Tourism Committee will be created to facilitate its implementation.
The contributions from elected officials, community leaders and professionals from various sectors will enrich the content of the selected strategic areas, in consultation with the policy makers.
Gibbs added that an economic development scheme will be initiated in the same spirit to define a strategic road map for traditional activities such as fishing, agriculture, crafts and other small cottage industries to ensure diversification of the economy, particularly in innovative areas such as digital or energy transition.
He mentioned his intention is to give a clear, coherent and realistic outlook to tourism professionals, investors and institutional partners, always in the spirit of keeping everything clear, simple and efficient.
The Collectivité noted the overview of the new tourism strategy was well received by the attendees.