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FECTAB Squares Off Against BTB

FECTAB Squares Off Against BTB
October 07
12:08 2018
REPORTER: Marion Ali, -

Consultations will have to be extended in order to determine if the tour operator business that is conducted at Terminal 1 at the Fort Street Tourism Village will be relocated to the Marion Jones Stadium.

The extension on consultations come on the heels of firm rejection from the Federation of Cruise Tourism Associations (FECTAB) to the Belize Tourism Board’s (BTB) proposal. BTB had made the proposal for the relocation on grounds traffic congestion issues at the tourist village on days when cruise ships visit.

But this was not the first nor second time that BTB has brought up this issue, but it was the first time that the Association has made such an unwavering message of objection when it held a press conference on Friday. They say it is because prior to the March municipal elections, the current Belize City Council, which regulates traffic in the city and also has a hand in the matter, had promised them that they would not support the relocation of the tour operators. So the tour operators thought that the discussion on that topic had ended.

President of FECTAB, Tom Greenwood told the Reporter that if the tour operators are moved, their already struggling business will surely suffer more because tourists will nit want to have to walk all the way from the Tourist Village to behind the Memorial Park area to be picked up. He explained that currently, they are picked up and dropped off at the Tourism Village, which also has a shelter from the elements for them.

Greenwood explained that even the tourism season is at its peak now, they are not seeing the kinds of business they once did. So to propose to move their operations away from the area will discourage tourist from wanting to take their services.

The BTB had claimed that there were consultations done prior to what would have been a “trial run” to take effect around this time, but based on FECTAB’s reaction, Deputy Mayor, Oscar Arnold assured the group on Friday that Mayor Bernard Wagner has “shelfed” the matter until further consultations involving all the relevant parties are conducted.

The relocation would affect more than the tour operators, because all the vendors who set up their stalls behind Mirab’s would also be moved from there.

The Reporter has contacted the BTB to get a reaction to FECTAB’s and the Council’s position in the matter. We await their response.

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