Ref: BTIA Members Past and Present
12th June 2020
Dear Members and Corporate Sponsors,
The past few months have been the most challenging we have faced in our lifetime. Our tourism industry, which was once the lifeblood of our nation’s economy, is on its knees. The crisis wrought by COVID-19 has affected everyone – none of our members have been spared.
BTIA is integrally involved in preparing for a post-COVID-19 future and lobbying for the best interests of members in the short, medium, and long-term. Some of the positions we have taken will please some members and displease others. Already, we have received both words of support and appreciation, as well as disappointment from others. We cannot please everyone, but we hold our heads up high that we are lobbying for the best interests of our general membership and the tourism industry.
A few high profile members and corporate sponsors have informed us that they will withdraw their support of BTIA. To those, we say: “Thank you very much for your past support. We sincerely appreciate the past partnership. We will continue to do everything within our reach to ensure that our industry gets back on track for the benefit of our current members and, by extension, the entire industry, which includes you. You are always welcome at the BTIA.”
What have we done over the past five years for you?
We have taken strong and principled positions that have benefitted most of our members. From winning the Supreme Court case related to the Harvest Caye Cruise Port project against the Government of Belize, to the successful publication of Belize’s signature magazine –Destination Belize, the hosting of successful Belize Tourism Expos, our prolonged engagement with the Belize Tourism Board on the revised minimum standards for the accommodation sector, and successfully advocating for the offshore oil exploration moratorium.
We also serve as a critical member of the Sargassum Task Force and the Coalition for Sustainable Fisheries. More recently, we are working with the Ministry of Tourism and the Belize Tourism Board to provide input to the development of COVID-19 health and safety protocols for hotels and restaurants.
We have also successfully lobbied the Development Finance Corporation to offer low-interest long-term financing to our members and businesses who may need this support to get back up and running when our economy reopens.
We thank all our partners, members, corporate sponsors, and individuals that keep supporting our BTIA. Our commitment to our members and the wider tourism industry remains paramount and is our utmost priority.
Let us continue to be kind and supportive of each other as we lead the way toward the survival and recovery of our tourism industry and the national economy. We remain true to our mission to promote the sustainable development of the tourism industry. The COVID-19 pandemic is testing our resiliency, but united, we will survive, overcome, and prosper.
From the President, Executive Committee and the Secretariat
Belize Tourism Industry Association
Cell #: (501) 621-4999