His Excellency Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali said the Government will be establishing a tourism and business facilitation center in Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo) to help promote tourism in the region.
Dr. Ali was at the time addressing the Regional Toshaos’ Meeting, last Saturday.
“We will establish with the RDC, a Region Nine tourism platform, where we will employ persons from the government side that people can call and get information, on tourism, they can get tourism facilitation, to help people facilitate the tourism business,” the president said.
The Head of State said provisions will also be made for the hosting of a seven-day training in the region which will focus on marketing and product development.
“Out of the training programme we will create a high-quality brochure on all of these areas, that will be placed at our airports, on all of our websites, we are now launching a national platform that is called stabroekmarket.com that will have all of these tourism products.”
The brochures will also be placed on government websites and the business directory App.
“The minister would lead an effort with a video team to do high quality video production and short documentary on the tourism product of all of these communities, so we will help you to promote it and market it.”
President Ali said every effort will be made for the timely implementation of the initiatives. In addition, he said the government will assist in the development of the Eco-Lodges.
“We are going to provide technical help to you, to design those lodges, to design the layout of your tourism areas, to ensure that you capture your product and build infrastructure that best elaborate your product.
“We have to develop it as we get easier access to the area more infrastructure, your tourism product is going to grow immensely,” the President noted.
President Ali indicated that the government wants to build a strong tourism product in Kumu, which will be supported by the Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce.
In her brief address to the Toshaos, Tourism Minister, Oneidge Walrond, MP, said training will continue in the region as the Guyana Tourism Authority has a strong presence there.
Minister Walrond also committed to visiting Nappi and other communities interested in developing tourism products.
She said the GTA is currently developing the South Rupununi Circuit, which will encourage tourists to visit more villages when they are in the region.
The tourism minister announced that Region Nine is next on the list (after Region Seven) for the one stop shop event being coordinated by the ministry.
The event will give persons the opportunity to register with the Small Business Bureau, apply to the National Insurance Scheme, Deeds Registry and Guyana Revenue Authority.
They will be given the opportunity to apply for small business grants.
Several Toshaos have indicated their interest in developing their existing tourism products or venturing into the industry for the first time.
The Rupununi, Region Nine is the most developed tourism circuit in Guyana with diverse experiences in adventure, nature and community-based tourism among other experiences.
Tourism is one of the main drivers of economic growth in the region.