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? Gov?t to continue with LCDS fundsGuyana?s Tourism sector is a large and growing industry with potential that can be realised if the correct measures are implemented moving forward.This is according to Minister of Tourism, Catherine Hughes, in an interview with this publication where she outlined the goals of her Ministry with specific reference to the Tourism Industry.?[Tourism] is a large and growing sector but we don?t want to think of it in that way,? said the Minister. She noted that her administration wants to do an audit on the sector?s contribution to the country?s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).Minister Hughes had cited a study- the Guyana Brand and Marketing Strategy (2012) – which estimated that the sector contributes over three percent to Guyana?s overall GDP.?Tourism contributes around 3.7% to Guyana?s GDP. Based on the calculations for tourism expenditure in 2012,Wholesale Authentic Jerseys, it is possible to make estimates of the value added of tourism. This is a better measure of the impact of tourism in the national economy than merely considering tourist expenditure,Cheap Jerseys Online,? the study read.The study went on to project that should certain budgetary recommendations be adopted by the Government, the country could achieve an 8 percent growth.Minister of Tourism, Catherine HughesAccording to the study, ?If a budget of US$1.5 million, as is recommended, were spent by the Government to achieve this 8 percent growth, it can expect a return in the economy of around US$11.5 for every dollar invested in the market.?Moving forward, Minister Hughes said that the A Partnership for National Unity and Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) administration will ?absolutely? continue with the Low Carbon Development Develop Strategy (LCDS) as it allows for provisions to the sector,Wholesale Jerseys Free Shipping, especially with regard to Eco-tourism.?Under the LCDS, there are funds for tourism projects, so I?m excited that we will be able to get some of those projects,Authentic MLB Jerseys Online, have a look at them and start moving on them,? said the Minister.She further explained that her Ministry will be aggressively tackling how Guyana is marketed to international tourists. As it stands, the United States and Canada remain the most popular North American countries which Guyana receives the most visitors from,Cheap Jerseys Online, with Germany and the United Kingdom bringing the most European visitors. For Guyana?s Tourism product, she noted, the country could be more competitively priced.?I think we have to make our product more competitive. Meaning, not in terms of quality and facility but the pricing,? related the Minister. She related that visitors from the Caribbean, such as Jamaica, would be less inclined to travel to Guyana when somewhere like Miami is more affordable.?One of the things we need to do is to really look at our pricing structure. We need to be more competitive and we need to have incentives, like reductions in the taxes on aviation fuel,? said the Tourism Minister.In addition,Cheap NFL Jerseys, she pointed out that tourism needs to be categorised differently from other sectors, as lowering the rate of Value Added Tax (VAT) could contribute to the sector?s growing potential. Minister Hughes added that the country needs more airline carriers, which would increase carrier competition to the benefit of the travelling consumer.Moreover, the Minister is of the view that smaller hotels could benefit from the concessions which bigger hotels like the Marriot and the Pegasus already benefit from.According to her, a growing hospitality and service industry could work to the advantage of employment in Guyana as, ?it is very suited to train in a very short space of time.?As the Ministry continues to collaborate with local industries like the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples? Affairs as well as international agencies, Conservation International among those, Hughes expressed confidence that the country?s tourism potential can be realised.In another interview with the Indigenous Affairs Minister, Sidney Alli****, it was revealed that promoting the country?s first peoples? unique cultural integrity would be a focus for his agency. For his part, the Minister Alli**** is aiming to make tourism a sustainable part of Indigenous communities as it would provide an avenue for local development outside of agriculture.
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