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Tourism Minister Celebrates Achievements, Pledges Continued Commitment to Local Advancement in 2023 Annual Report

The Hon Minister, Josephine Connolly

In its recently released 2023 Annual Report, the Ministry of Tourism, Environment, Fisheries and Marine Affairs, Culture and Heritage, Agriculture and Religious Affairs reflects on a year of remarkable accomplishments.

The report underscores the dedicated efforts of the ministry's team in advancing key sectors of the Turks and Caicos Islands economy.

The Honourable Minister Josephine Connolly said she takes great pride in the accomplishments of her team in advancing the fortunes of the people of the Turks and Caicos Islands.

“I am resolute in my commitment to be accountable to the People of the TCI. It is not just a responsibility, but a duty I hold with utmost respect. My pledge is to work tirelessly, ensuring that every Turks and Caicos Islander reaps the benefits of our tourism-led economy. Together, we will build a future where prosperity is shared by all, and the beauty of our islands is a source of pride and opportunity for each citizen,” she said.

“I firmly believe in accountability, recognising that as your Minister, I am answerable to you – the citizens who have entrusted us with the responsibility to lead and govern. This report serves as a testament to our commitment to transparency and keeping you informed about the advancements made in key areas crucial to the prosperity of our nation,” the Minister added.

Among the significant achievements in the 2023 Annual Report is the establishment of Experience Turks and Caicos, the Destination Management and Marketing Company (DMMO). Experience Turks and Caicos is progressing well with 67 percent of its anticipated staff hired with 74 percent of these positions held by Turks and Caicos Islanders. It is anticipated that by March 2024, 90 percent of the staff will comprise Turks and Caicos Islanders.

Another major achievement for the Ministry of Tourism is its collaboration with the Turks and Caicos Islands Airport Authority (TCIAA) and the Ministry of Immigration and Border Control. The collaboration has resulted in the successful facilitation of direct airlift from London, Heathrow to Providenciales via Virgin Atlantic Airways, a significant step in expanding our market share and attracting European luxury travelers.

In the Agriculture Department, a major achievement was the implementation of the Agriculture Development and Food Security Plan which will enable the Government to facilitate a “Whole of Government” approach to food security.

The Culture Department celebrated the premiere of its documentary on James Alexander George Smith titled “JAGS: A Legacy of Service” and the impactful ‘Unapologetically Us” campaign that honoured those who contributed to the Turks and Caicos Islands' growth and development.

The Department of Tourism Regulations (DTR) was also very productive in 2023, successfully reinstating the TIDES program and training over 750 individuals.

The Maritime and Fisheries Department, among its other achievements, initiated a pilot programed as part of the Sustainable Livelihood Project to construct 225 lobster habitats or casitas for commercial fishermen. This initiative aims to increase the availability of lobsters and to boost financial rewards for the fishermen.

The Department of Environment and Coastal Resources (DECR) made significant strides in 2023 to manage and monitor protected areas including renowned national parks such as Chalk Sound, Princess Alexandra and Columbus Landfall.

Looking ahead to 2024, the ministry reaffirms its commitment to transparency, accountability, and excellence in all endeavours, promising continued progress and dedication to the well-being of the Turks and Caicos Islands.



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