MARIGOT–President Daniel Gibbs at Thursday’s press conference said his team has been working for the past few weeks on the long term tourism strategy which involves eight strategic objectives and thirty precise actions to improve the attractiveness of the territory and create employment.
Following consultations with tourism partners and a meeting held at the end of June 2017 it was decided to release the new strategy and new branding for the territory in November 2017. On diversifying the economy he said an economic development scheme will be elaborated on and this will be complementary to the tourism strategy.
“Thanks to these two strategic documents, objectives will be clear in all domains to create jobs,” he said. The economic development agency will provide the prefiguration and this will provide on our goals between now and December 2017.
Gibbs added he also has an agreement with the European Commission for the creation of a Local Agriculture Action Group. This action group has the responsibility to develop the agriculture sector and will benefit from a grant of 3-million euros between now and 2020 to develop future projects as well as contribute to current projects and actions.
On other points, he disclosed Territorial Police controls have been increased for July and August. He said he wanted a more visible presence of the police in Marigot but also in French Quarter where Gendarmes were recently subjected to a hoax emergency call and then pelted with stones and other objects.
Neighbourhood associations and parents must also work with the police to ensure better prevention, he added.
On the return of the Sargassum weed problem, Gibbs indicated the Collectivité will increase the number of workers in the Green Brigade up to 30 from 20, and pay 20 per cent of the salaries (108,000 euros more per year).
The Collectivité already contributes a subsidy of 150,000 euros per year since 2015 for the operation of Green Brigade clean-up workers. He said the Collectivité has also invested in a backhoe to assist the clean-up while appealing to heavy equipment businesses to assist.