WILLEMSTAD - On Thursday May 23, 2019, CHATA organized its 2nd membership meeting for 2019. The meeting took place at CHATA member Cinemas Curaçao. Every quarter CHATA organizes a member meeting where members get the opportunity to educate themselves on various topics, connect with other members and share their knowledge and experiences. This quarter CHATA invited the Coral Restoration Foundation, The Ministry of Economic Development, the Chamber of Commerce, the Curaçao Airport Partners, the Growth Strategy Team and Deloitte to provide an update on various topics.
4 years of Progress | Coral Restoration Foundation Curaçao (CRFC)
Jeremiah Peek, Board Member of CRFC, provided an update to the CHATA members of their reef restoration achievements. The Foundation currently maintains more than 30 coral supporting trees located on three different nurseries between the Sea Aquarium and Penstraat. These trees hold more than 2000 corals, steadily growing until they are ready to be out-planted on the reef. Up until now, the CRFC has successfully restored over 4500 corals on various reefs along the southern coast of Curaçao.
Let’s Sow Today so we can Reap Tomorrow | Curaçao Chamber of Commerce
The Chamber of Commerce of Curaçao presented their ideas to jumpstart the economy of the island. Curaçao currently has a stagnant economy and we have lost our advantage against other markets according to Mr. Marcos Cova from the Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber of Commerce believes that a major reversal is required in order to reconnect Curaçao to the world economy and integrate ourselves into the world economy developments. The Chamber of Commerce suggests to apply the economy as an instrument to improve the level of welfare on the island. They argue that we should invest in People and Productivity to guaranty a healthy economy and a decent level of welfare. Curaçao should increase specific investments, create more high productive job opportunities and increase export.
Growth Strategy the way Forward | Growth Strategy Project
Mr. Jacques Heide from the Growth Strategy Project team provided an overview to the CHATA Members of the projects that the Growth Strategy Project team is currently undertaking to jumpstart the economy. The project team focuses on projects to improve the function of the local capital market, fortification of investment and establishment climate, gaining access to financial and non-financial regulations, stimulation of innovative initiatives, implementation of the tourism masterplan, RIF Otrobanda development and professionalization of management of terrains and immovables. A concrete example of one of the projects that the Growth Strategy Project team is working on is the project of CHATA to reskill 300 people to be able to work in the tourism industry. This is also in line with the Manpower Planning Project of the Ministry of Economic Development.
How to Drive Growth in Hospitality through Innovation | Durvin de Lannoy
Technology has changed the way customers interact with a company and what they seem to expect. Durvin de Lannoy from Deloitte provided the membership with nifty tips to capitalize on their customers’ changing needs in order to drive growth. Mr. de Lannoy informs the members of a couple of tools to assist them in this such as, Location Based Marketing, Analytics, Robotics, Onsite Guest Satisfaction Surveys and Social Listening.
Furthermore, Mrs. Peggy Croes provided an update on the Airport Expansion Project that recently came to completion. In addition to this she also elaborated on Air Service Development of Curaçao. The Ministry of Economic Development also provided an update on the implementation of the recommendations of the Level Playing Field Committee.
Miles Mercera (President & CEO of CHATA) and Vianny Henriquez (Marketing & Product Manager of CHATA) provided an update on the current projects that CHATA is undertaking. Mr Mercera elaborated in the CHATA Goals 2019/2020 that were set by the newly appointed Board of CHATA. New additions to the goals include the increased focus on providing cost effective ways to invest in the development of our human capital and to further create awareness and provide education on tourism to the youth in partnership with stakeholders.
Mr. Mercera also touched base on the importance of a Beach Policy to provide clarity on beach usage to properties on the coast and the community at large. Furthermore, he also spoke about Safety and Security and how it is affecting the industry. Vianny Henriquez elaborated on human capital development initiatives and awareness projects. Furthermore, she also elaborated on the newly formed partnership with the Museum Association of Curaçao. CHATA believes that our culture and history is an important component of the local tourism product. Through this partnership both partners aim to further increase the traffic of tourists at our local gems.
As was apparent from the CHATA Membership Meeting, there are still many opportunities to grow our local economy and the tourism industry. CHATA will continue to provide its support to the government, its membership and other stakeholders in order to further develop our industry.