By Jomo Paul
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Two members of Parliament from both sides of the House made presentations on the 2015 budget with their targets being on the Tourism Sector.
The presentation saw People’s Progressive (PPP) Member, Gillian Burton being pitted against Tourism Minister, Cathy Hughes. Hughes in her presentation boasted that the APNU+AFC government has begun crafting a National Tourism Policy document which will soon be in draft format. She said that this is something that the PPP has failed to do despite being in Office for some 23 years.
She noted that the document will be used as a guide to tourism development and will address tourism regulations and legislation. The Minister was clear that “tourism is poised to deliver the good life,” noting that the sector has great potential to provide jobs for many Guyanese.
She also spoke of the boosting of sport and entertainment based tourism in Guyana along with the hotel industry, pointing out that small hotels have been marginalized by the former government which gave huge concessions to the Marriott Hotel.
Following Hughes’ presentation, Burton made it clear that she was not pleased with the incentives outlined for the sector. She argued that “no feasible plan has been mentioned to tap into the tourism treasure chest.”
According to her, several of the initiatives outlined by Hughes were birthed under the PPP administration.
“One needs to ask “what’s new” in the tourism sector other than making it a separate industry (Ministry),” said Burton.