Fabian Demicoli

Business Breakfast on Tourism

During a Business Breakfast focused on Tourism it was highlighted that with investment and effort to increase the quality of standards, Malta could be able to attract up to 2.8 million tourists annually if peak season arrivals could be replicated in the off-peak season, according to Malta Tourism Authority CEO Paul Bugeja. However tourism expert George Cassar voiced his concern that Malta had reached saturation point and added that he believes that Malta would not be able to cater for more than the 1.7 million tourists that

 visited the island in the previous year.

On the other hand Tourism Minister Edward Zammit Lewis stated that tourism in Malta could still benefit from improvement, making due reference to the fact that an increase in the arrivals between October and November could be observed and that addressing the lack of infrastructure in the south could easily increase tourism in the area. Dr Zammit Lewis continued by expressing his concern about three-star hotels, saying that business owners should make a greater effort to improve their level of service.

GRTU Deputy President Philip Fenech, who also represents entertainment and hospitality sector at GRTU, reacted from the floor expressing that he believes that the investment accomplished by the Corinthia Group will increase the standards and positivity across the St. Julians area. This achievement should be an example to businesses in the area to upgrade and invest in their sector.

Mr Fenech continued by stating that the southern part of Malta should no longer be considered as an industrial area but rather as another touristic area with niches of its own. However it is also important that environmental restraints must be considered. Mr Fenech concluded by addressing issues that concern the Paceville commercial community. He mentioned that loitering must be addressed by all stakeholders in order to reach conclusions. He also mentioned that language school students within St Julians area are causing havoc and thus language schools should focus on attracting older students which would increase higher added value in the area. These were a few of the points Mr Philip Fenech discussed with the panel.  

 

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