This is the message from Chief Secretary Kelvin Charles to Trinidadian visitors.
At Wednesday’s post Executive Council media briefing at the Administrative Complex in Calder Hall, Charles said that at a Tuesday meeting with the Tobago Hotel and Tourism Association (THTA), officials indicated they were ready to welcome visitors in terms of room stock.
“We take this opportunity to say to our friends across in Trinidad that we are open for business. We have decided that we would work together to try to encourage once again our domestic visitors to Tobago.
“As a matter of fact, in the words of one of our calypsonians, I think it is Crusoe, ‘come lewwe go, lewwe go to Tobago, this paradise found by Robinson Crusoe.’ If princess Margaret could
have said it then, we are saying it now, so we are saying come to Tobago,” he said.
Charles said with respect to getting to Tobago from Trinidad, Caribbean Airlines (CAL) was doing its part.
“We would have acknowledged on previous occasions that it was a situation that was untenable and untenable for too long. CAL would have leased a jet aircraft to assist in respect of the movement of persons from Trinidad to Tobago and that additional aircraft is expected to be here until the end of April in the first instance.
“That aircraft at peak capacity is expected to carry a total of 1,088 persons, reflecting I think eight rotations per day and that is in addition to CAL’s normal schedule, which they would have indicated that as is the norm they would ramp up for the busy period,” he said.
Charles also reported on the T&T Spirit, stating that on Monday, when he visited Trinidad for the inauguration ceremony of President Paula Mae Weekes, he toured the vessel.
“I can advise that works was apace when I visited and as of today, I am also aware that a sea trial was done, and it appears at this point that the trials went well. I am saying that it appears because I would prefer to wait for formal notification, but my enquiries suggest that the trial went well.
Therefore, in respect of the Port’s announcement some time ago that by the end of this week, the Spirit should be back in operation, at this time I see no reason for there to be a loss of enthusiasm,” he said.
Charles also conratulated new Chairman of the Tobago Division of the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce, Claude Benoit, and the new Executive who were elected on Monday.
“You may be aware that about two weeks ago, we met with members of the Chamber and we discussed a number of issues ranging from tourism, inter-island transportation, security, business confidence and arising out of that meeting, we agreed on the establishment of a joint committee comprising members of the Chamber and persons representing the THA.
“So that this committee will have the responsibility to discuss some of the options that can be pursued to treat with the declining business environment,” he said.