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Saint Ange Tourism Report 8th January 2018

January 9, 2018 Business News No Comments Email Email

In this issue:- The Editorial announces that the Saint Ange Tourism Report will from now on be issued on Mondays instead of Sundays. It congratulates the existing public / private sector partnership of Seychelles and the 15% increase in visitor arrival numbers for 2017 but laments over the coming increases in electricity prices offering a compromise for the tourism industry. The Tourism Quote of the week is an  extract of the Top New Year’s Resolutions by Pope Francis. It discusses meeting with Air Seychelles Staff and British Airways listing Seychelles in its Top 18 Destinations for 2018. Stand Alone articles include:-  1. Seychelles tourism marches on. 2. Sunsets, sushi and sparkle, 3. Najib Balala retains his tourism portfolio as Minister of Tourism of Kenya. 4. British Airways Reveals Top 18 Destinations for 2018 “Seychelles makes the list”. 5. Tourism Sector of Mauritius – Sen Ramsamy : “The tourism sector on an interesting growth mode”. 6.”Oceans, coral bleaching getting worse”. 7. Rebranding Interventions to Alter Nation’s Reputation. 8. Skydiving marvel boosts Kwale tourism, puts it on world map. 9. Seychelles’ 11th Eco-Friendly Marathon February 25, 2018. 10. Africa: Nigeria’s Carnival Calabar 2017, Best In the last 10 years. 11. Cyclone Ava to inundate Madagascar with life-threatening flooding. 12. International Newswires continue to republish our report.

Welcome to Edition 1 of 2018
Monday 8th January 2018

The New Year 2018 and its challenges, some new and some carried forward from the previous year, are all now part of our lives for the months to come. How we fare in this new year will depend on how our Island’s tourism industry moves. For Seychelles now, more than ever before, our prosperity depends on a healthy tourism industry.

Congratulations to the Seychelles Tourism Board for another successful year with double digit growth for 2017. I say Tourism Board because when success in visitor arrival numbers is not recorded they are always alone in the firing line. However, we all know that success is also the result of the tourism private sector trade of Seychelles. The spirit of togetherness that has existed for the last couple of years in the Public / Private Sector Partnership remains key to the continued success for Seychelles. The tourism private sector know that they need to work tirelessly to achieve the success they need for their own tourism businesses, and Government as facilitators know that they have to play ball especially when the islands’ economy is so dependent on the industry that is, and will continue to remain, the pillar of Seychelles economy. A 15% increase on a year to year basis is commendable.

This year has begun with a flood of foreboding announcements concerning the increase in the cost living for Seychellois, including the increase in the cost of electricity. The two phased approach to the increase will start in January 2018, and a further expected rise will kick off in March 2018. It is a sobering reality that the increased costs may backfire on the tourism industry, and consequently the Nation as a whole. Businesses are caught between a rock and a hard place. The increased cost of electricity, from what was already seen as expensive by most, will impact the bottom-line of the industry, and they will be forced to do something. The increase is but a discouragement to keep Seychelles vibrant and well-lit.

The humble touristic establishment may have little choice soon but to remove light fixtures around the property to compensate for the increase. Some properties are settling for removing one light in every three in the gardens, others are looking at bigger cuts. The small Seychellois owned establishments are all troubled by the increases in costs. Ignoring the dull and lifeless vibe that the establishment would be portraying to their guests, the most important concern would be the added security risks posed by the blanket of darkness obscuring the grounds of any establishment. Businesses and staff alike would feel more vulnerable than they already are to the relentless thieves plaguing our islands.

Something must be done if Seychelles wants to assist its industry that remains the pillar of its economy. A plausible avenue that could be implemented is to introduce a special rate category for all those falling within the tourism industry. Tourism is too important for Seychelles today for the country to just close its ears and hope all moves on as normal. Tourism is the pillar of the Seychelles economy and we need to nurture it to ensure that it remains healthy at all times.

The country has a duty of care for its visitors. Already, the alarming number of break-ins is not acceptable and the posts on social media over the long New Year weekend shows reality and this is being read by the industry at large. To avoid losing our safety label, we must take strides to safeguard public places frequented by tourists and locals alike. We must have regular security patrols in public areas and must ensure that establishment grounds are well-lit.

We are starting a new year and everyone is hoping to see a positive change where we all feel it is needed. This is why the quote for this week is an extract from the Top New Year’s Resolutions by Pope Francis:-

– “Be careful how you speak, purify your tongue of offensive words, vulgarity and worldly decadence.”

– “Heal wounds of the heart with the oil of forgiveness, forgiving those who have hurt us and medicating the wounds we have caused others.”

– “Look after your work, doing it with enthusiasm, humility, competence, passion and with a spirit that knows how to thank the Lord.”

– “Be careful of envy, lust, hatred and negative feelings that devour our interior peace and transform us into destroyed and destructive people.”

– “Watch out for anger that can lead to vengeance; for laziness that leads to existential euthanasia; for pointing the finger at others, which leads to pride; and for complaining continually, which leads to desperation.”

British Airways has listed Seychelles as one of the most desirable holiday destinations. Seychelles is a must-see for 2018. What an honour for our Islands. Keep Seychelles visible and it will remain relevant always. Air Seychelles on the other hand continue to be discussed by staff members. It is the National Airline and will survive. In a meeting last week with a group of the airlines staff the point made is to impress on the new management that the airline needs to reflect its ‘Creole Spirit’ a more personalised approach in its marketing and sales. This is the edge they need on the main routes of Paris and Johannesburg.

Events continue to be used by tourism destinations in their bid to get visibility so as to remain relevant. From Kite Surfing in Kenya, to Eco-Friendly Marathon to Nigeria’s famous Calabar Carnival, everyone is enticing international press to their shores. Events often will help showcase culture and they provide much needed entertainment for the local population.

It is important to again today acknowledge all who are diligently re-posting the Saint Ange Tourism Report weekly. Our Report ranges far and wide, from Australia to the Americas, from the Indian Ocean Vanilla islands to Africa & Asian and Greater Europe, with your continued support, which is greatly appreciated. You are helping us to grow from strength to strength with each new Edition.

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