(Posted 01st April 2023)
Dr Vanessa Gaitree Bheekhoo Gowreessunkar, a tourism expert on the tourism island of Mauritius has come out strongly to advocate the need for the island a relook at the Vanilla Islands concept for their marketing. The Doctor and tourism expert published a comprehensive study alongside Maximiliano Korstanje (Argentian) and Shem Wambugu Maingi (Kenyan) which stated that Mauritius forms part of the Indian Ocean Vanilla Island Group alongside Seychelles, Reunion, Madagascar, Comoros and Mayotte Islands and that this concept needed to be embraced. It is known that ever since the change from Alain St.Ange, as the Minister of Tourism of Seychelles, who was the driving force behind the regional organisation, this Indian Ocean Islands grouping has been operating in a low-key approach and reduced speed.
Dr Vanessa Gaitree Bheekhoo Gowreessunkar, the tourism expert of Mauritius has said that as the island is small with not much to offer apart from the beach and some cultural attractions it needed to work with its neighbours to create more of an attraction for visitors. The Tourism Expert in her document “Tourism in Crisis” stated that Mauritius also needed to push forward the concept of good governance saying that too often tourism enterprises were subject to a cartel of important personalities. She cited the issue of production of fruits and vegetables to seeking of consultants as examples where it was always the same personalities who benefited.
Dr Vanessa Gaitree Bheekhoo Gowreessunkar, said that Mauritius could also seek the assistance of the UNWTO as has been done by several other countries as she stated that the tourism crisis across the word was not finished and that the world was experiencing a mutation of the tourism industry.
The words by the editors of this tourism document that was published by Nova Science Publishers in the United States on the merit of the Indian Ocean Vanilla islands are the exact same words echoed by Alain St.Ange, the former Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine of the Seychelles at the launch of the regional body that brought together Mauritius, Seychelles, Reunion, Madagascar, Comoros and Mayotte. The organisation was formed in Reunion in 2010 and in 2012 its first President Alain St.Ange was elected at a tourism Minister’s Meeting held in Seychelles. St.Ange was President of the Vanilla Islands for two consecutive years before passing the presidency to President Didier Robert of Reunion in 2014 and the Mauritius Deputy Prime Minister Duval in 2015.