Published on : Sunday, December 29, 2013
The Belize Tourism Industry Association is pleased to announce that it held a very successful 28th Annual General Meeting and Seminar on December 5th at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza. The event’s main objective was to update the membership on the Association’s accomplishments for the year 2013 and inform the membership of upcoming plans for 2014 to be carried out by the BTIA Secretariat. It also offered an opportunity for members to dialogue on current issues, challenges and to voice their concerns.
BTIA Board Members including various Destination Chairs, Sector Representatives and invited guests from both the private and public sectors were in attendance. Main speakers included BTIA President, Mr. Herbert Haylock and special Guest Speaker Dr. Kenrick Leslie, Executive Director Caribbean Community Climate Change Center.
Guest Speaker for the event, Dr. Leslie addressed the attendees about climate change and its effect on our tourism industry. He noted… ‘Data from weather stations in Belize and other Caribbean countries show that it is already one degree warmer than it was fifty years ago. This exceeds the global average. The global average right now is about point eight and we in the Caribbean are seeing one. But don’t expect just that, only observed changes in temperature, although this too will present significant constraints on an industry that relies on its tropical location. Low-lying countries like Belize will face the onset in the shift of the climatic norm and the impact of the rising sea level and coastal areas and beaches within the next two decades.’
The President, Herbert Haylock told the gathering that…’change is inevitable, it will continue to happen whether we want it to or not, challenges will continue to mount whether we want them to or not, work will continue to grow – whether we create it or not! How we respond to each one will serve to define us. He noted that… ‘We have got to get our development ducks lined up and in the right order. Are our public sector agencies and ministries prepared to do this…meaningfully do this? As private sector, we have our responsibilities and obligations to live up to. We will not shy or run from that. But development is a two way street. National resources must be properly allocated and placed to support all areas’. He called on the members to continue meeting challenges head on and called on the ‘Spirit of Volunteerism’ to remain strong in the Association and noted that the Secretariat will significantly step up its work engaging the membership in the year ahead in 2014.
A seminar “Improving the Bottom Line, Surviving Today’s Challenges” facilitated by Mr. Paul Lecky, was held after the A.G.M. and provided a framework for learning and applying vital skills and techniques in effectively delivering operational efficiencies in business to BTIA’s membership and participants.
A cocktail was held the evening prior, on December 4th, to celebrate the achievements of the organization and industry. BTIA acknowledged its Diamond, Gold and Special Event Sponsors for their contributions to the organization. BTIA’s many achievements are obtained with generous support and commitment of Sponsors.