Inaugural state of the industry conference to concentrate on beating global recession

Theme of 14th to 17th Sept confab in St. Martin is: How to Win in a Competitive Environment


A global economic crisis, rising fuel prices, airline mergers, high travel costs, reduced spending by visitors. These are some of the issues facing Caribbean tourism.

Policymakers, executives and other practitioners in the tourism industry will explore ways to beat the global recession, when they meet in St. Martin in September for the first ever Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) State of the Industry Conference.

How do you beat these challenges? How do you win? The experts will share insights at the inaugural State of the Industry conference, 14-17 September, St. Martin.

Look who’s talking:
- Air Canada’s Senior Director of Network Planning, Vijay Bathija
- British Airways CEO Keith Williams
- JetBlue’s Director of Global Sales, Chad Meyerson
-  RedJet’s CEO Ian Burns And that’s only on the first morning!

Join your colleagues 14-17 September in St. Martin for the one conference that provides answers to the challenges that face the tourism industry.

puce-bleue Register at www.onecaribbean.org

The CTO – which organizes the conference in collaboration with the St. Martin Tourist Office – has announced that discussion on this issue will revolve around a theme that demonstrates the Caribbean’s determination to overcome the current challenges and to develop solutions to some of the most urgent issues facing the tourism industry in the Caribbean. The CTO has chosen as the conference theme: How to Win in a Competitive Environment.

For two full days - 16 & 17 September - tourism officials from the public and private sectors, led by a variety of experts, will tackle a number of critical issues including overcoming the hurdles to intraregional travel, how to use limited resources to the greatest advantage, how to influence the affluent traveller, and being truly competitive. The new CEO of British Airways will also present a world view of the state of the industry.

“The state of the industry is not only about challenge, it’s also about opportunity,” said Hugh Riley, secretary general of the CTO, the region’s tourism development agency representing over 30 Caribbean countries. “Therefore, we want to come out of this conference with some answers as to what’s next, how to spot the opportunities to move forward, how to beat this recession. The tourism business is fiercely competitive and the Caribbean has to win.”

The inaugural State of the Industry Conference is the CTO’s industry convocation of Caribbean tourism practitioners and strategic partners. It builds on the success of the Leadership Strategy Conference held in Barbados last year, and satisfies a need felt among the membership, including travel agent partners, for such a gathering, annually.


The general conference sessions will be preceded by a series of meetings on 14 & 15 September involving ministers, commissioners and directors of tourism, as well as private sector tourism partners. The conference headquarters hotel is Le Domaine on French St. Martin.

The Caribbean Tourism Organization

The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), with headquarters in Barbados and marketing operations in New York, London and Toronto, is the Caribbean’s tourism development agency and comprises membership of over 30 member governments and a myriad of private sector entities.

The CTO’s mission is to provide to and through its members, the services and information needed for the development of sustainable tourism for the economic and social benefit of the Caribbean people. The organization provides specialized support and technical assistance to member countries in the areas of marketing, human resource development, research and statistics, information technology and sustainable tourism development. The CTO disseminates information on behalf of its member governments to consumers and the travel trade.

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