During the 2012 International Tourism Fair of Madagascar, Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture; Attoumani Harouna, the Vice President of Mayotte Tourism, and Michel Ahamed, his Director of Tourism; Eric Koller, the President of the Office National du Tourisme de Madagascar, and Vola Raveloson, his Executive Director, met to support the call made by Pascal Viroleau, the Head of the IRT (La Reunion Tourisme), for a General Meeting of the Vanilla Islands on July 11 in the Seychelles.
Pascal Viroleau had proposed the July 11 date as it coincided with the Routes Africa 2012 meeting also being held in Seychelles, as well as the General Assembly of the ICTP (International Council of Tourism Partners).
“We took the opportunity, as we were all in Antananarivo in Madagascar to meet and discuss the Vanilla islands and to echo our support to the call by La Reunion for the Seychelles meeting in July. Many things are on the agenda for discussion, and Seychelles, Madagascar, and Mayotte would again be adding the situation of air access, as well as Vanilla Islands events, that could be a tool for increasing visibility of the region and the Vanilla Islands itself,” Minister Alain St.Ange of the Seychelles told the press after the three-island meeting.
Madagascar is positioning its International Tourism Fair as its event for the Indian Ocean Vanilla islands, Seychelles on its part continues to position its Carnaval International de Victoria as the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands event, and Mayotte has said that they are studying the possibilities of also launching an event for the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands. It is hoped that at the Seychelles meeting, La Reunion, Mauritius, and Comoros will also be proposing their event that would be placed on the events calendar of the six islands united under the banner of the Vanilla Islands.
Representatives of the three islands present in Madagascar all said that they were thankful to La Reunion for holding the secretariat working on the Seychelles meeting.