British Airways CEO addresses The Caribbean on autumn visit to the region

British Airways CEO addresses The Caribbean on autumn visit to the region

Willie Walsh, chief executive of British Airways, is to give the keynote address at the Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO) leadership strategy conference in Barbados between October 9-12th. The CTO is a Barbados-based development and sustainable tourism organisation representing 34 Caribbean countries and territories.

As well as attending meetings with various Caribbean ministers and commissioners of tourism, Walsh will deliver the keynote speech at the Sunday morning conference on the future of intercontinental travel and the importance of partnerships between airlines and the destinations they serve. One of the highlights of the conference will be a BA-hosted dinner on Sunday 10 October.

Walsh’s visit to the Caribbean will highlight BA’s commitment to regions like the Caribbean whose economies depend on tourism. He will also attend a fundraising lunch in aid of the CTO Foundation, where he will address university students and local business leaders.

Commenting on his forthcoming visit, Willie Walsh said, “We have a long and proud history of serving the Caribbean stretching back many decades. It is a favourite holiday destination for thousands of our customers who return time and again to enjoy the fantastic Caribbean hospitality.

“I am looking forward to visiting Barbados to see how British Airways can continue to contribute to one of the world’s premiere tourist destinations and to discuss the challenges facing us.

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““As the world emerges from recession, we must be careful to ensure that our policy-making - in regard to taxation and other matters - encourages recovery in all regions of the world, particularly those where international tourism is a critical mainstay of the economy.”

Hugh Riley, secretary general of the Caribbean Tourism Organisation, said, “The CTO is delighted at Mr Walsh’s visit. We have always been grateful for the crucial support that British Airways has shown our region over the years and we feel very honoured that the company’s chief executive will be helping the Caribbean’s tourism experts to consider how our region can remain competitive, enhancing our brand and staying ahead of current marketing innovations.

“It’s also very exciting for our region to see the launch of such a prestigious, large-scale leadership strategy conference, attended by so many high profile individuals and we look forward to seeing the outcome and benefits to the Caribbean.”

The conference will include a business component during which a new CTO chairman will be elected.