Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic – The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export), within the framework of the 10th European Development Fund (EDF)-funded Haiti-Dominican Republic Binational Programme, sponsored the participation of Haiti’s Ministry of Tourism, and Haitian businesses in the tourism sector at the World Ecotourism and Production Fair hosted in Santiago, Dominican Republic from the 18th to the 26th of October.
The event, organized by Fundación Ciencia y Arte (www.fca.org.do) in conjunction with the Santiago municipal council was the 18th version of the Ecotourism Fair, but the first time the Fair gained a more international presence, with participation of several countries from Latin America and Europe exhibiting their ecotourism product offerings.
Caribbean Export sponsored the Haiti Pavillion where the Ministry of Tourism exhibited the country’s ecotouristic potential with beautiful tropical beaches and mountains, and also showcased Haitian beverages and handicraft. The sponsored delegation also consisted of representatives from the institutional private sector – the Haiti Tourism Association (ATH), as well as individual firms (Best Western and Moulin sur Mer Hotels), who benefitted not only from participation in the fair, but by their participation in B2B meetings with the President of the Dominican Association of Travel Agencies and Tourism (ADAVIT) for the Northern Region and with travel agencies. During these meetings, the associations and businesses shared best practices, and discussed future plans for collaboration. Furthermore, one enterprise was able to close a deal to accommodate 30 persons from the Santiago Rotary Club in their facilities.
The participation of Haiti’s Ministry of Tourism at the World Ecotourism and Production Fair, where hundreds visited the Haiti Pavillion, also served to change erroneous perceptions of Haiti as a modest tourism market, while highlighting the natural beauty that is characteristic of both sides of the island of Quisqueya and the Caribbean region as a whole.