The 5th Annual Conference on Sustainable Tourism Development has been deemed a success by all of those involved in its organisation. The event, chaired by the Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO), and hosted this year on the Caribbean island of St. Kitts, has highlighted various new initiatives that should be implemented to build and sustain a strong heritage-based tourism sector.
This year’s line-up included speakers from across the region and further afield who spoke on various heritage and cultural-based themes. Featured speakers included Hon. Dwyer Astaphan, St. Kitts and Nevis` Minister of Tourism, Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Mrs. Karen Ford-Warner, CTO’s Deputy Secretary General, and Jeffrey Brisbane Executive Director of the Dominica Festivals Commission. Opening remarks were made by Mr. Jean Holder the CTO`s Secretary General.
Topics discussed varied from the importance of festival tourism in boosting tourism receipts to the need to protect and maintain valuable underwater resources such as coral reefs.
One project which received keen attention was undertaken by non-profit organisation the Anglo-Danish Maritime Archaeological Team (ADMAT), who focus on the preservation of historic shipwrecks across the Caribbean.
ADMAT’s Founder and President Simon Spooner said of the Conference: “From our perspective the conference produced a vast amount of new ideas and has created better liaisons with other Caribbean islands.” He added that, “in general it has been great for networking and product awareness, and the speakers have been of a good standard.”
The conference was hosted at the recently opened Marriott resort located in Frigate Bay on the island`s East Coast.