From 21 to 23 March 2019 the annual Trade Fair for Tourism will take place on Sint Maarten – the Sint Maarten Annual Trade Show (SMART). The program is filled with innovation masterclasses, workshops for the tourism industry, business-to-business meetings and festivities. Tour operators, travel agencies, travel bloggers and event planners visit the exhibition from all over the world. For the most up-to-date information and contact details, go to the SMART St. Maarten website.
Anguilla’s thematic workshop “Innovation for Tourism Growth” was great opportunity to work again with Sherma Hodge, Innovation Manager from Anguilla with whom cooperation started nearly five years ago. Jude Huston, Innovation Director of Sint Maarten was another member of the initial core innovation team. So glad working together again.
OCTA Innovation Thematic workshop “Innovation for Tourism Growth” was held in Anguilla 11-12 of October. In was held in the Caribbean month of Tourism. However, it’s reach was global, having participants and speakers from all sides of world including French Polynesia and Wallis et Futuna, Pacific ocean Overseas Countries and Territories.
Nice example of sharing good practice, when on World Tourism Day St Maarten promotes Saba pride in its tourism product and the cleanness of its neighbor Saba Read more
Anguilla two days thematic workshop was held in line with OCTA Innovation’s mission which is to strengthen sustainable development through innovation for economic development and diversification, to improve regional and global competitiveness of the European Union’s Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs).
In most OCTs, tourism is a major opportunity for development and growth. But not any type nor visitor volume respond to the goals of the OCTs and their populations. Innovative and creative tourism activities, facilities and services as an effective way to compete in the larger international tourism marketplace have been discussed. Workshop initiated and highlighted relevance of tailored innovative solutions, creative attractions and visitor services to be more successful in securing constant growth and overcoming geopolitical issues and natural disasters.
Missions to BVI and St. Martin were very short but very engaging and promising. Two meetings with the Premier of British Virgin Islands, honourable Dr. Orlando Smith, and a meeting with the Prime Minister of St. Maarten, honourable William Marlin as well as multiple meetings with innovation directors and key stakeholders, were very fruitful due to the progress of moving from consultations and innovation strategies to actual implementation of the strategies.
Particularly meetings with head of governments and extensive discussions on how to how to implement innovation as well as to make innovation sustainable during and especially after the end of the project. Establishing innovation ecosystem and developing different innovation supporting instruments and enhancing public private partnership have been recognized as priorities.
Mission of Milan Jezic von Gesseneck, OCTA Innovation Team Leader to Sint-Maarten on 10th and 11th August 2017 assisted in progressing on different innovation issues on the island. The key innovation person in Sint-Maarten is Jude Houston, Innovation Director for Sint-Maarten. All meetings and actions have been developed and coordinated by Jude Houston.
Very key meeting was with Prime Minister Honourable William Marlin and his collaborators Marc Arnold, Cassandra Janssen and Jude Houston. Prime Minister Honourable William Marlin confirmed enthusiasm and optimism for accelerating implementation Innovation for sustainable growth in Sint-Maarten. Innovation is now regarded as the vehicle towards improvement of this country’s economic competitiveness.
The Secretary General H.G.A. Plantijn LL.M. shown keen interest in systemic innovation and in the manner how to progress with systemic innovation implementation.
Marc Arnold and his team from the department of the Interior and Government relations, Olivia Lake and Thijn Laurensse, evaluated opportunities to move towards innovation in several aspects: internal restructuring, innovation board reestablishment and developing different instruments for propelling innovation. There was discussion on regional experience and practice, as well as exchange of information and how to enhance having more synergy.
Dr. Francio Guadeloupe, Dean of the University has highlighted high engagement of the university in promoting academic tourism as one of the ways where OCT has benefit in synergy of capacity-building, education, training and attractive locations of the OCTs. Furthermore was discussed cooperation based on exclusive academic experience of Dr. Francio Guadeloupe in several OCTs.
During his stay in Sint-Maarten, OCTA Innovation Team leader also had the opportunity to meet Mervyn Butcher, from the Permits and licences & Economic control department to discuss about the fishery issues including regional cooperation with Anguilla and Saint-Martin.
Two days of hard work on Innovation for St. Maarten with Milan Jezic von Gesseneck. We had to opportunity to meet with the Prime Minister, Honorable William Marlin and other key stakeholders who have expressed their enthusiasm and optimism for Innovation. It is now regarded as the vehicle towards improvement of this country’s economic competitiveness.