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Wavel Ramkalawan: Historic Presidential address
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Our Creole culture will enrich the tourism experience, says new Minister

9th May 2018

Vision: New Tourism Minister Didier Dogley
Vision: New Tourism Minister Didier Dogley

The new Tourism Minister for Seychelles, Didier Dogley, wasted no time in spelling out how he would improve the industry.

He said he wanted to make Seychelles “a model for sustainable tourism to the world, enriched by the Creole culture and the hospitality of our people”.

Formerly the minister of Environment, Energy and Climate Change, he was assigned the new portfolio in President Faure's April reshuffle.

Minister Dogley welcomed his appointment saying it provided him with an excellent opportunity to shift his efforts: from taking care of the bedrock of Seychelles tourism – the natural environment – to ensuring that visitors get to discover and experience the true qualities of the Seychelles islands.

He explained: “In a world where unspoiled natural landscapes and seascapes are becoming a rare asset, Seychelles still offers a wide array of unique sites with breathtaking beauty and exceptional experiences.”

He went on: “My vision is to use my knowledge and experience in environment stewardship, coupled with a strong partnership with the trade, to ensure that Seychelles becomes a model for sustainable tourism to the world, enriched by the creole culture and the hospitality of our people.”

There have been other developments in the tourism industry:

The Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) took part in the 25th Arabian Travel Market (ATM) – the Middle East's largest travel trade event. The United Arab Emirates together with the other five Gulf Cooperation Council members contribute a significant number of visitors to Seychelles. The United Arab Emirates alone was the third leading market in 2017, sending over 28,000 visitors.

STB’s Manager in Dubai, Ahmed Fathallah said: “We are hopeful and anticipating to surpass last year's visitor arrivals to Seychelles in 2018 by raising awareness of the destination through our participation in different travel and trade events in the GCC region. The good turnout recorded at this year’s ATM has already prompted us to start preparing for the next year."

Emirates renews its marketing agreement with the Seychelles Tourism Board

Agreement: Orhan Abbas of Emirates Airlines, centre, with Sherin Francis of the STB
Agreement: Orhan Abbas of Emirates Airlines, centre, with Sherin Francis of the STB

Emirates Airline has extended its global marketing agreement with the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB), renewing its support to the islands.

Emirates’ Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations for Africa, Orhan Abbas, and STB’s Chief Executive, Sherin Francis, signed a Memorandum of Understanding in April..

Mr Abbas said: “The Seychelles is a very important destination to Emirates. We will develop a series of joint activities together with the Seychelles Tourism Board and we are confident that positive results will be seen in the short term.”

The agreement provides for the joint undertaking, by Emirates and STB, of various marketing activities, such as tourism trade shows and fairs, trade familiarisation trips, product presentations and workshops.

Mrs Francis said: “STB recognises the pivotal role the Emirates airline has played in developing the Seychelles tourism industry over the past decade. Through the signing of the MOU, the destination is again reiterating its commitment and supports toward the airline to ensure it keeps on serving the destination.”

Irish market potential

A group of 20 tour operators and travel agents in Ireland now have a broader knowledge of Seychelles, following a training session in Dublin organised by the STB's UK office. STB Director for UK & Ireland, Christine Vel said: “In spite of being a relatively small market for Seychelles, there is potential for the Irish market to grow.”

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