United States Arleigh Burke Class destroyer, USS Mc Faul, is due to anchor in Port Victoria with more than 800 navy officers and will be welcomed with 4 days of an open fair in the heart of Victoria, the capital of the Seychelles, and at one of its reputed beaches, Beau Vallon.
A number of stalls will be erected at Beau Vallon and Victoria where vendors will sell locally-made products and promote Seychelles culture and cuisine.
The Seychelles Minister for Tourism and Culture, Alain St.Ange, joined with the Minister responsible for Industry, Peter Sinon, to plan the activities that would surround the arrival of the US Ship in Victoria. Seychelles remains a safe port for US and other navies to stop for crew rest.
In a meeting with Minister Sinon, the Senior Defense Official and United States Defense Attache, Commander Micheal Baker, and his delegation; the Seychelles Tourism Board delegation headed by the Chief Executive Officer, Elsia Grandcourt; the Principal Secretary for Culture, Benjamine Rose; the Special Advisor to the Minister, Raymonde Onezime; and representatives of the Small Enterprise Promotion Agency (SEnPA); Minister St.Ange explained the concept of this open-air bazaar saying that the “idea was fully supported by the Seychelles government as it will provide R&R for the navy personnel and an opening for the island’s creative industry.”
He said that SEnPA, which works towards the promotion of small enterprises, will be responsible to host the four days of activities, which will also see the setting up of a beer garden in Victoria.
Commander Baker said that “he is very grateful that Seychelles has endorsed the idea of having a fair during the stopover of a large contingent of American navy personnel.” He went on to explain that “Seychelles is one of the top best sports fishing centers in the world and will offer the American navy the opportunity to relax and experience Seychelles’ unique destination.”
Minister Sinon has also endorsed the idea. As the Minister responsible for Industry, with SENPA under his portfolio, he said that “his ministry advocates the private sector partnership and [is] ready to embark on this trial event.”
The arrival of the US navy ship this week will also coincide with the arrival of an Australian navy ship.