Former UNWTO Secretary General and GTRCM Co-chair, Dr. Taleb Rifai, stated, “while the damage caused by Hurricane Dorian is truly devastating, the 700 islands that comprise the Commonwealth of the Bahamas are intact and open for business. The GTRCM, along with its partners, will aid in coordination efforts towards restoring normalcy on the islands of Great Abaco and Grand Bahama, the two islands affected by the hurricane.”
In his discussion with the Minister of Tourism of The Bahamas, the Hon Dionisio D’Aguilar, GTRCM Co-Chair the Hon Edmund Bartlett, Minister of Tourism of Jamaica, and members of the GTRCM board discussed the state of the industry and the nature of help that is required in the Bahamas. He also made contact with regional and international partners who are specifically involved in tourism development, to assist the Bahamas in the redevelopment of the two affected islands.
“We are developing a coalition of partners such as major hotels, airlines and all major tour operators who can provide resource support to enable recovery in Great Abaco and Grand Bahama islands,” said Minister Bartlett.
The Minister noted that one such local partner is the Sandals Resorts International (SRI), which has already, began a response mechanism through their SRI Foundation. In addition, Minister Bartlett noted that, through the efforts of those who have supported the GTRCM thus far, more than US $10,000 worth of water has been donated to those in Abaco, through the Centre’s partner the Bahamian non-profit group HeadKnowles.