Published On: Mon, Jul 13th, 2015

First public-private Tourism Strategy Meeting in Seychelles

download (4)The first public-private Tourism Strategy Meeting to build Seychelles’ presence in China and India was chaired by Joel Morgan, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Transport. Other ministers in attendance were Jean Paul Adam Minister for Finance, Trade and Blue Economy, and Alain St.Ange, the Minister for Tourism and Culture.

The meeting that was held at the Offices of the Tourism Board at ESPACE Building was attended by representatives from Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association (SHTA), Seychelles Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), Air Seychelles, Seychelles Civil and Aviation Authorities (SCCA), Seychelles Tourism Board (STB), and tourism partners who opened discussions on Seychelles’ tourism policies regarding China and discussed what Seychelles as a country wanted to achieve from the Chinese market and the numbers of Chinese visitors Seychelles was targeting.

Private sector representatives felt it was fundamental that these points are tabled and a common consensus reached, in a bid to harmonize and for Seychelles to build a cohesive approach for its presence on the Chinese market.

Seychelles, which has long been dependent on its major source market in Europe, bringing 66% of business to the country, is more than ever convinced it needs to diversify and remain robust to withstand politico-economic shocks from its European market.

China brought 13,000 visitors to Seychelles in 2014. Today, China’s estimated population is over 1.3 billion. The Tourism Strategy meeting achieved consensus that Seychelles does not need a huge number of Chinese visitors, but enough traffic to fill its flights and the 11,000 beds in the country.

Representatives of the Tourism Strategy meeting also agreed the time had come for Seychelles to move away from the policy of working to attract Chinese chartered flights and to instead prepare to launch direct non-stop regular weekly flights and work across the board with Chinese Tour Operators (TOs) selling the destinations and the region. It was highlighted with one weekly regular flight; Seychelles can bring 10,000 Chinese visitors annually.

Closing the Chinese market chapter, Air Seychelles announced its strategy to launch its winter schedule flights to China during the course of the year.

On the Indian market, representatives of the Tourism Strategy meeting agreed Seychelles should lure more Indian holiday makers to its shores and increase the visitor arrival figures two-fold in this market.

Seychelles is receiving about 6,000 travelers annually from India and this despite the four direct weekly flights.

One major point that came out in the discussions on the Indian market is the need to raise Seychelles’ visibility on the market at the same time as the current applicable airfare being offered by Air Seychelles on this market is reviewed.

It was agreed the Indian strategy should target honeymooners, which represent 90% of the market segment for Seychelles.

Seychelles said members of the Tourism Strategic Meeting should also define a key message which will drive marketing of the destination in India.

The Tourism Strategic Meeting was a recommendation by Vice President Danny Faure at the multi-sectoral meeting held Friday, July 3.

Seychelles is a founding member of the International Coalition of Tourism Partners (ICTP) .

Source: Seychelles Ministry of Tourism and Culture