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Democratic Labour Party Manifesto 2003
Manifestos » DLP Manifesto 2003» Tourism
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With a beautiful climate and good infrastructure, Barbados is the ideal Tourist destination, if there is such a thing. However, the BLP through a number of misguided policies is killing the goose that lays the golden egg. For example, the imposition of a 7.5% VAT on accommodation to replace the 5% hotel and restaurant tax. This was a major error.

If tourism is to be revived to become the main economic engine of this country once again many things need to be done urgently.

They fall into three main categories.

  1. The re-organisation of the management structure of the Industry.
  2. Create a more profitable environment in order to encourage investment in the further development and expansion of the Industry.
  3. Live up to the slogan that "Tourism is Everybody's Business' so that more nationals are involved in, and benefit from this very important Sector.

Even though we hear so much about this era of globalization the present organization of the administration of tourism does not measure to the current market demands the only exceptions being important sounding titles and "Lotto" salaries.

The present leadership has no more qualifications or hands-on experience in tourism than did the first manager of the Board and is consequently given no more responsibility. This vital industry needs qualified, experienced management.

  • The Ministry will promote investment, seek to develop airline and cruise ship services and liaise with other Ministries and Departments on matters of concern which impinge on the hospitality industry such as crime, garbage, beach access and the environment generally, statistics, laws, regulations and taxation.
  • A DLP Government will appoint a Director General of Tourism with full authority subject only to the policy directives of the Minister and the general concurrence of the Board of Directors of which he/she will be Chairperson.
  • More attention will be paid in future to training young Barbadians so that they may be qualified to take responsibility for the future professional management of the industry.
  • Under a DLP government the Minister will set policy but will not seek to micro-manage the industry.
  • Every effort will be made to encourage investment by cutting red tape and establishing One-Stop facilitation. At the same time smaller businesses, which provide ancillary services in tourism, will mainly be reserved for local investors.
  • The Board of Directors will be representative of all the major players in the Industry. Board Members will act as Chairpersons of specialist Committees to advise the CEO on specific interests and issues.
  • Under this management structure there will be a unit of qualified persons charged with responsibility for product quality and product development. Product quality means ensuring the highest standards in every respect and the elimination of negatives. Product development means creating events and situations, which would enhance the enjoyment of a visitor's stay in the island.
  • This Product Quality & Development unit will also pay particular attention to things such as: noise pollution, the strict enforcement of water sports regulations for the protection of both locals and visitors and the signposting of roads, villages, plantations and Parish boundaries.
  • All aspects of tourism training will be the responsibility of a Director of Training within the structure. Training will cover:
    1. Service of all kinds within both the public and private sectors.
    2. Public appreciation and understanding of the importance of Tourism to the entire community.
    3. Knowledge of the history of the country, flora and fauna and the functioning of Government.

MARKETING THE PRODUCT

The marketing of the industry must include all elements of the Industry working within co-operative, coordinated campaigns.

The emphasis will no longer be 'pitched' at the upper end of the market alone - which can usually afford to take care of itself - but at the total product offered. Barbados has something to suit everyone's taste and everyone's pocket.

  • Home Hospitality in which people offer visitors accommodation within their homes will be encouraged. Homeowners will be assisted by incentives to comply with the required standards. The fundamental aim will be to offer value for money and ensure satisfied customers.
  • Barbados must reposition itself in the world market by staying in the forefront of modern technology in its marketing thrusts. To put it simply, we must just be a click away.
  • Additional sales representatives will be employed in the overseas offices with on-the-job training and provided with a system of sales incentives.
  • A programme aimed at converting cruise ship passengers into long stay visitors will be implemented with the establishment of a chattel house information booth at the passenger entrance to the Port Complex.
  • This booth will offer information on the full range of products and will feature a continuing slide and video presentation of Hotels and Attractions.
  • Encouragement will be given to artists and crafts people both in the production and marketing of quality indigenous products.
  • The former Harbour Police will be re-established as a special Tourism Police unit, within the Force, to police the tourist belt.
  • Work Permits in the Tourism Sector will be subject to stricter controls and requirements.
  • Monthly receptions at the residence of the Prime Minister will be re-introduced. These would afford visitors an opportunity to interact with a wide cross-section of the local and tourism communities including students from Schools, the Community College, Polytechnic and University who are pursuing careers in tourism.
  • The National Trust Open House programme, the Nature Walks programme and the Gardens programme will be promoted as part of our heritage and eco-tourism package.
  • Support will be given to "Quality Tourism for the Caribbean" the C.T.O. "Caribbean Blue Flag" campaign and the UNESCO "World Heritage Global Strategy Plan".
  • As support for these plans, we will erect at Oistins, a monument to mark the importance of the Treaty of Oistins/Charter of Barbados in 1652 with particular reference to its subsequent contribution to the American Declaration of Independence on July 4th, 1775.
  • Health Tourism with the establishment of Spas particularly in the parishes of St. John, St. Joseph and St. Andrew will be encouraged.
  • Development of health spas specifically for post-operative care, post plastic surgery recuperation, constant care for the elderly or debilitated persons and drug and other addiction rehabilitation centers will be supported though financial incentives.
  • Clean, sanitary public facilities will be provided in Bridgetown, Speightstown and Oistins.

A FAIR SHARE FOR TOURISM

  • Our lower-tax regime and specifically the reduction in corporation tax will be of tremendous benefit to this sector.
  • Hotel workers will benefit from the DLP's lower income tax package but more specifically the first $5,000 of their overtime will be tax free.
  • The reduction of VAT on food to 10% will be of benefit to the hotel and restaurant sector.
  • A Democratic Labour Party Ministry of Tourism will welcome and encourage innovative initiatives from all citizens and players in the industry. After all, Tourism is everybody's business.

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Key
  Bajan Free Party   NDP = National Democratic Party   United Progressive Party
  Barbados Integrity Movement   People's Democratic Congress   WPB = Workers Party of Barbados
  Barbados Labour Party   PEP = People's Empowerment Party   Independent Candidate
  Democratic Labour Party   PPA = People's Political Alliance   *incumbent
  Kingdom Government of Barbados   Solutions Barbados   ** Political Leader
Sources
Barbados Electoral and Boundaries Commission
Bajan Free Party (2018). Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/Bajan-Free-Party-BFP-HonAlex-MitchellEl-1767331239973521/
Barbados Integrity Movement (2018). Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/barbdaosintegritymovement/?ref=py_c
Barbados Labour Party. (2018). Retrieved from https://www.blp.org.bb/
Coalition of United Party. (2018) Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/alexmitchell.el/
Democratic Labour Party. (2018). Retrieved from http://dlpbarbados.org/site/
Solutions Barbados. (2018). Retrieved from https://solutionsbarbados.com/
United Progressive Party. (2018). Retrieved from https://uppbarbados.org/
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