Seychelles bid for UNWTO Executive Committee membership gets boost


(Posted 04th June 2013)

Seychelles’ efforts to get elected to the United Nations World Tourism Organization’s Executive Committee last weekend got another boost, when Madagascar threw their support behind the Seychelles bid to represent Africa.

Madagascar’s Minister responsible for Tourism, Mr. Jean-Max Rakotomamonjy publicly announced that Madagascar is supporting the Seychelles bid for a seat on the United Nation’s World Tourism Organization Executive Council. The election for this seat will be taking place at the body’s General Assembly that will be held in August this year and co-hosted by both Zambia & Zimbabwe in the cities of Victoria Falls and Livingstone respectively.

Minister Rakotomamonjy pledged his support for the Seychelles bid during his opening address at the 2013 International Tourism Fair Madagascar in the presence of Mr. Didier Robert, President de la region La Reunion, members of the diplomatic corps, the regional and international media representatives, tour operators and tourism exhibitors.

He was quoted in a media release sent out as having said: ‘Tonight I have the pleasure, on behalf of Madagascar, to publicly state that we are standing behind the Seychelles for their bid for a seat on the Executive Committee of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation, the UNWTO. We believe that Minister Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister for Tourism and Culture and President of the Vanilla Islands would be an asset for the region and for the UNWTO Organisation. His dynamism, his leadership and his professionalism in the field of tourism has today been recognized, not only in our region, but right across the world. We will give Seychelles our full support for a seat on the Executive Council of the UNWTO. Minister Alain St. Ange of the Seychelles told the press after the announcement was made that he valued the support echoed by the Madagascar Minister.

We are an archipelago that depends on tourism, the pillar of our economy for our islands is tourism. For our industry to continue to grow and to be consolidated, we need our region, as we need Africa to be more seen and to be more recognized as the new destination offering unrivalled potential for the discerning travelers. This is why we have put our country’s name forward and today we say thank you to Madagascar for confirming their support. It is important to also state that Zambia has also already confirmed their support during the last INDABA tourism trade fair in Durban South Africa’.

Reports of a rival bid, the rumours of which have been making the round for a while, even though the supposed other country has been trying to keep this very quiet and out of the headlines, are still waiting to be confirmed but the wider a support base the Seychelles can now build, the more certain it will be at the end of the day that the election will go their way, and very likely unopposed as other aspirants will have to wait for their turn to come in the future. All the best as the final weeks towards the UNWTO General Assembly now tick down.