On the spot: Airline executives and tourism ministers meet in the Cayman Islands to talk about the recovery in the Caribbean

“Recover, Reconnect, Relive.”

This is the theme of this year Caribbean Aviation Dayand that’s what travel and tourism pros are planning to do this week in the Cayman Islandswhere a high-level conference is underway.

By September 15, the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism brings together senior aviation executives, government leaders and the media to discuss opportunities and challenges in the Caribbean and identify ways to rebuild a more competitive aviation sector in a post-COVID world.

The event, which pax covers on site from The Ritz-Carlton Grand Caymanis a collaborative effort between the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

As well as marking the fourth annual Caribbean Aviation Day, which will take place on September 14, the week’s schedule also includes information on CTO business meetings and updates from the Youth Tourism Congress. of the Caribbean.

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Journalists flew to Grand Cayman on Sunday (September 11), arriving at Owen Roberts International Airportwhere the flags were at half mast out of respect for the recent death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Today (September 12), a day-long press conference is taking place, providing Caribbean destination tourism ministers with a platform to share key destination updates.

Flags fly at half mast at Owen Roberts International Airport in Grand Cayman.  (Pax Global Media)

Cayman Islands, Bahamas, Turks and Caicos Islands, Saint Lucia, Antigua and Barbuda, Belize and Grenade are among the many nations taking part in the briefings.

IATA’s global network Aviation Days are known for their compelling subject matter, inspiring speakers, lively debates and networking opportunities.

People scheduled to speak this week include Kenneth BryanCayman Islands Minister of Tourism and Transport; Edmond BartlettMinister of Tourism, Jamaica; Lisa R. CumminsMinister of Tourism and International Transport, Barbados; Raphael EchevarneManaging Director, Airport Council International – Latin America and the Caribbean; Philippe Bonifatti, managing director – South America and the Caribbean, Lufthansa Group – and several other government and airline executives.

(Click here to see the full schedule).

A “pivotal moment for the Caribbean”

Topics for the week will range from sustainability and multi-destination tourism to infrastructure investment and best practices for reducing aviation fees and taxes.

“This conference aims to bring together the most connected professionals and ministers in our region to discuss the issues currently facing the aviation and tourism industries. I hope we come away with new ideas, stronger alliances and with the best solutions that benefit the region as a whole,” said peter cerdaIATA Regional Vice President for the Americas, who is also presenting this week.

From left to right: Edmund Bartlett, Minister of Tourism, Jamaica;  Lisa R. Cummins, Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Barbados;  Kenneth Bryan, Minister of Tourism and Transport, Cayman Islands.  (Provided)

Between speeches and panel discussions, media attendees will explore some of the Cayman Islands’ best tourism assets, from its Crystal Caves and Botanical Parks to historic sites, such as Pedro St. Jamesto its popular stingray boat trip.

Neil WaltersActing Secretary General of the CTO, noted how the conference comes at a “pivotal moment for the Caribbean”.

“…particularly as the region faces challenges in air transport and the sustainability of the tourism sector, in the wake of the past two years,” Walters said.

“A coming together of minds at this high level bodes well for the sector and represents a major step in the right direction to solving these challenges.”

Stay tuned as pax brings you more on-site coverage of IATA and the CTO conference in the Cayman Islands.

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