Puerto Rico Hosts Caribbean Travel Marketplace 2018
Puerto Rican Dr. Pedro Rossello Gonzalez Convention Center is hosting the 15th edition of Caribbean Travel Marketplace. This event is the platform where group and vacation packages are arranged and planned for the whole year. The meetings are organized by the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA), in collaboration with Puerto Rico Tourism Company (CTPR) and the District Puerto Rico Convention Authority (ADCCPR).
CHTA highlighted that the travel industry demand for business in the Caribbean region is very encouraging, which is confirmed by the interest and attendance to this event.
Omar Rabero, executive director of the Puerto Rico Convention Authority, said “this convention center where we are essentially illustrates de spirit, resiliency and strength of the people of Puerto Rico and the whole Caribbean. We had to transform this convention center into a shelter, a center of relief for brothers and sisters from Caribbean islands that were impacted by hurricane Irma. We had to command the entire response base of the disaster from this center. We had to cancel all the events, but we were able to serve de people of Puerto Rico and the Caribbean in another fashion.
We are now ready to host over 230 events for the first six months of this year. That essentially shows how resilient the Caribbean people are. We appreciate the CHTA for choosing Puerto Rico, for giving us the opportunity to host this event. Puerto Rico is open for business, open for tourism.”
On the other hand, Manuel Laboy Rivera, secretary of Economic Development and Commerce for Puerto Rico, pointed out that the diversification of the country’s economy is a very important part of schedule for 2018. “Tourism is a major component of that strategy. This is an outstanding event and I think there are two main reasons. One is the fact that 2018 is a very important year for us, is a year a transition, transformation of the government and our economy. Therefore, starting the year with such an important event like this one is really magnificent, there are high expectations for the rest of the year and the things that are yet to come.
“The fact that we have 29 countries represented here, the fact that we have close to 280 suppliers, close to 113 buyers and more than one thousand delegates, all together in this magnificent event is really a testament that we are really open for business. We want you to have the best time ever, but at the same time we want you to conduct great businesses on the island.
“Governor Rosello is very committed to making sure that Puerto Rico is friendly for businesses, that we have the best government, the best regulatory framework, that we can really provide an easy way to businesses across sectors in Puerto Rico,” Manuel Laboy Rivera said.
Four months after the devastation caused by hurricanes Irma and Maria in Puerto Rico, the authorities there are reporting an impressive recovery. Growth in air access to the country has quadrupled, and stakeholders are projecting a record-breaking cruise passenger season of some 1.7 million visitors for 2018/2019, expected to generate roughly US$250 million.