(INEWS)Guyana has signed an agreement with Costa Rica to further partnerships between the two countries in tourism, explore investment opportunities and exchange knowledge and technical support, continuing a trend of Guyana building its tourism product through collaboration.
Signing the Letter of Intent and Collaboration was Minister of Tourism, Industry and Commerce, Oneidge Walrond and the Costa Rican Minister of Tourism, William Rodriguez Lopez, at the Minister’s office at the Costa Rican Tourism Board Building in San Jose on Wednesday.
The agreement is aimed at strengthening tourism partnerships between the two countries and covers institutional arrangements and an action plan for knowledge sharing, technical support and other areas of collaboration.
“Minister Walrond and Director of the Guyana Tourism Authority, Kamrul Baksh will be engaged in a series of meetings in the Central American country over the next three days, including discussions with the Director of Tourism Management and Certifications Department and the Director of Marketing at the Costa Rican Tourism Board,” a statement from the Ministry of Tourism said.
“Tourism investment opportunities in Guyana and Costa Rica, and potential collaboration areas between the Tourism & Hospitality Association of Guyana (THAG) and The National Chamber of Tourism of Costa Rica (Canatur) are also part of the agenda.”
The signing comes almost one month after Minister Walrond visited St Lucia for a two-day official visit, during which greater bilateral partnerships between the two countries and even a potential twinning of their tourism products was discussed.
Minister Walrond had said that both countries have attractive tourism options for their citizens to enjoy, such as St Lucia’s Jazz Festival and Guyana’s Rupununi Rodeo in Region Nine, and the Cricket Carnival.
“We have additional options for Guyanese wishing to experience the St Lucia Jazz Festival. Similarly, it will also promote our local events such as the Rupununi Rodeo and the Cricket Carnival to the St Lucia market.”
“Recognising the potential, we have begun tourism twinning with St Lucia, combining two distinct appealing experiences and bringing the best of two worlds into one package,” the Minister further said.
St Lucia’s Minister of Tourism, Dr Ernest Hilaire, who had visited Guyana to take part in the launch of the British Airways direct flight between Guyana and the United Kingdom at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), had meanwhile said that there is much his country can share with Guyana on the sector.
“So, we’ve developed a product in St Lucia. And we certainly look forward to working with you. We’ve met with your Minister. And I’m sure that under the leadership of your Minister, Guyana tourism will go very very far.”
“We need to start thinking about multi-destination marketing. So, you can come to Guyana, stay in St Lucia. You can come to St Lucia and come over to Guyana, with the ease that this flight offers. So, I’m really pleased… I look forward to the strengthening of the bonds of friendship and solidarity between Guyana and St Lucia,” the Minister had also said.
Guyana is already working in collaboration with Barbados to twin the two countries tourism products and to share best practices for the sector. Last year, an agreement was signed by President Dr Irfaan Ali and Prime Minister Mia Mottley of Barbados to further facilitate relations between Guyana and Barbados, and collaboration in a number of areas, including tourism.
The agreement, called the Saint Barnabas Accord, was signed on the sidelines of the 43rd Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Heads of Government meeting, and it paved the way for the two countries to further dialogue in nine specific areas. It was an updated agreement, since a previous Saint Barnabas Accord was signed between the two leaders.