Mr. St.Ange used his address to remind the General Assembly and all UNWTO’s Member States of the beauty of the Seychelles and of the new vision of the islands, which was launched by President James Michel of the Seychelles when he re-launched the country’s tourism industry following the economic difficulties that had touched the Seychelles main tourist markets.
The General Assembly had already heard many Ministers and Heads of delegations from Member States talk about their own country’s tourism industry. Alain St.Ange from the Seychelles decided to showcase the Indian Ocean Islands by emphasizing that everyone in the world of tourism should already know about the award-winning white sandy beaches of the Seychelles and about the turquoise blue seas that lap those clean white sandy beaches.
He emphasized the role being played by the Seychelles in the field of sustainable tourism and informed the General Assembly that the government of the Seychelles had now declared over 50% of the land area of the island to nature reserve. He also spoke about the work being undertaken between himself and Minister Freddy Ehlers, the Ecuador Minister responsible for tourism, in a bid to jointly promote Ecuador’s World Heritage Site of Galapagos and the Seychelles own World Heritage site of Aldabra Atoll.
Mr. St.Ange also echoed words of support for Kenya’s Tourism Minister Balala who had spoken about the Somali Pirates and the effects it was having on shipping routes and the tourism industry. He said that it was planned for the Tourism Ministers of Kenya and Tanzania and himself as the CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board to try to meet to see how a statement could be prepared to mandate the UNWTO to look at the Somali piracy concern as a challenge of the world and to transmit the appeal raised at the General Assembly to the United Nations.
When ending his address, Alain St.Ange presented a copy of the limited edition souvenir book of the Seychelles carnival to the Minister of Culture, Sports, and Tourism of the Republic of Korea, HE Mr. Choe Kwang Shik, and to Mr. Taleb Rifai, the UNWTO Secretary General, after he had presented to the General Assembly the Seychelles Carnaval International de Victoria as the world’s only carnival of carnival.