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Small Hotel Properties Get Revenue Management Training

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Contact: Ryan O'Bryan

Wednesday, November 22, 2006 – Newly appointed Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism Darrel Montrope, has highlighted the important role played by small hotel operators in the island's tourism industry.

Mr. Montrope spoke at the opening of a two-day Small Properties Revenue Management Workshop staged in collaboration with the Saint Lucia Hotel and Tourism Association and the Organisation of American States (OAS), at the Bay Gardens Inn on Monday.

He told the gathering, the workshop was consistent with Government's policy goals of creating an attractive and profitable investment climate and market friendly mechanisms, to generate opportunities for local participation.

“Government recognises tourism as a strategic economic and development priority. Thus we have been seeking to deepen the partnerships which are of importance to the industry and country. That this workshop is a collaborative effort between an International agency, the OAS, the SLHTA and the Government of Saint Lucia is no coincidence. That we need to develop and sustain a high quality product that is “brand Saint Lucia” is imperative. Thus this workshop is timely and necessary,” Montrope said.

Mr. Montrope urged participants to continue prudent management of the tourism sector and called on all partners to demonstrate responsibility in an effort to secure common developmental interests.

Meanwhile, the importance of the Tourism industry to the region as a whole has been one of the major factors why the Organisation of American States (OAS), has collaborated in activities aimed at developing the sector.

OAS resident representative to Saint Lucia Paul Spencer, described tourism as being probably the largest industry in the world and the most significant economic activity in the Eastern Caribbean.

Speaking at the opening of the workshop, Mr. Spencer said it was for those reasons that the OAS has always been supportive of the sector.

“That support goes back to the 1980's when we signed the first tripartite agreement between the Caribbean Tourism Organisation, the Government of Barbados and ourselves.That agreement has been the guiding principle; has been the basis of what the OAS has been doing in the tourism sector, particularly in the small hotel sector,” Mr Spencer noted.

The OAS official said the small hotel sector has a unique role to play in the country's development and the focus of the workshop on revenue management is key for the sector's survival and sustainability.

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