ICT vital to achieving sustainable tourism

DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, March 21, 2018

As Caribbean countries and members of the Organisation of American States (OAS) aim to achieve connectivity for sustainable tourism, the role of Information Communication Technology (ICT) is even more essential.

This view was posited by Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes, during her presentation at the XXIV Inter-American Congress of Ministers and High-Level Authorities of Tourism, at Marriott Hotel.  Minister Hughes was speaking on the importance of Product Innovation in Connecting the Americas.

Hon. Catherine Hughes, Minister of Public Telecommunications.

She explained the significant role the ICT sector plays in the development of the sustainable tourism industry and its supply chain.

“Access to the internet has had a massive impact on the travel and tourism industry with the development of millions of websites, reservation systems, online booking agencies, access to online tour operators and the traditional travel agent,” she said.

The Minister further explained that the rapid technological advancement over the last two decades has transformed the global tourism industry, especially with the development of the mobile phone and supporting high-speed data services.

“Today’s industry is characterised by a combination of technologies such as an array of mobile apps that offer a range of activities and access to social media networks, that allow any potential visitor, in any part of the world to sit in their home or office and plan their vacation…regardless of their interest or particular niche.”

Recounting the government’s focus in creating a digital Guyana Minister Hughes said, “Guyana has become a new world frontier for industrial development and growth with better economies, for technological expansion, for real development of tourism in all its sectors.”  To date, over one hundred high schools have internet connection, 85 communities have established ICT hubs, and several government agencies now have online access.

Over the years, Guyana has been laying a path for tourism synergies with its neighbours in South America and other Caribbean countries with the intention to place its eco-tourism package on the global map.

Minister Hughes believes the agenda can only be achieved with sustained good relations, discussions and support from participating OAS member states and Caribbean countries.

 

By: Crystal Stoll

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