The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) has started 2023, a year it sees as one of growth for the regional body, by welcoming the United States Virgin Islands (USVI) as its 25th member country.
The USVI, one of the leading destinations in the Caribbean, joins the organisation of regional tourism leaders at a time when the CTO seeks to refocus its mandate on shaping the Caribbean tourism sector of the future. The relationship between the USVI and the CTO is not a new one, and the organisation is confident that the renewed partnership will result in several positive outcomes for both parties, and the wider CTO membership.
In welcoming the new member, CTO Chairman Kenneth Bryan expressed his belief in the opportunity this relationship presents for regional tourism. He “wholeheartedly” welcomed the USVI and Commissioner for its Department of Tourism, Joseph Boschulte to the CTO.
“Having one of the fastest growing travel destinations in our fraternity further strengthens the Organization and enhances the spirit of collaboration and cohesion among our jurisdictions. The USVI has joined a community that is committed to working together to sustainably grow and develop Caribbean Tourism and we look forward to working with Commissioner Boschulte in this regard,” he said.
In expressing his thoughts on his destination’s status as a CTO member, Boschulte said, “The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) is a key economic driver in the Caribbean’s growth and sustainability, and we are honoured that the USVI is now a member. Sustainability is always top of mind for us as we look to maintain the tranquil and unspoiled landscapes of St Thomas, St Croix and St John. Eco-friendly practices are vital for keeping our islands clean and pristine, and to ensure the preservation of our natural resources and ecosystems. We saw encouraging growth in tourism in the USVI in 2022. We look forward to working with the CTO in 2023 to create mechanisms to ensure that growth continues for both the USVI and our Caribbean neighbours.”
The CTO member countries are representative of the diversity that exists in the Caribbean, which makes the region one of the most unique tourism destinations in the world. The organisation has adopted a mandate to support sustainable tourism and economic development among its members.