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Tourism Expert to Keynote World Tourism Day in St. Maarten


Lelei LeLaulu
International sustainable tourism expert Lelei LeLaulu will keynote the St. Maarten Tourist Bureau's World Tourism Day gala dinner at the Westin Dawn Beach Resort and Spa on Monday, September 27 in the Dutch Caribbean isle.

"St. Maarten proves size does not matter when it comes to using sensible tourism to enhance not only its biodiversity but also to improve the lives of its citizens," said Lelei LeLaulu, vice president of the Caribbean Media Exchange on Sustainable Tourism (CMEx) and co-chairman of Innovation for Sustainable Development Centre.

Speaking ahead of his gala dinner address at which the recipients of several awards will be announced, LeLaulu, also a director of the World Tourism Forum for Peace and Sustainable Development, expressed his delight at being asked to deliver the keynote address at the culmination of several days of World Tourism Day events. "St. Maarten can teach larger countries how to involve its citizens, especially its young people, in efforts to use sustainable tourism to protect its beautiful natural and human resources."

Noting the value of diversity in improving the regional Caribbean tourism product, LeLaulu welcomed St. Maarten's support of the Caribbean Media Exchange on Sustainable Tourism (www.cmexmedia.org), as "a sign of the determination of St. Maarten to move its attractions to the forefront of the region's efforts to enhance sustainable tourism."

He also asserted the better inclusion of the small island can enhance the wider regional appeal to international visitors, "because St. Maarten's distinct cultural and culinary flavors add tremendously to the international menu of the Caribbean's attractions."

The young and the elderly are two focal groups the St. Maarten Tourist Bureau has targeted for involvement in the various activities in celebration of this year's World Tourism Day, the theme of which is "Tourism and Biodiversity".

"We are pleased to welcome Lelei LeLaulu to our shores. With his confirmation, this year's gala promises to be inspirational as St. Maarten works with all of our stakeholders at home and abroad to strengthen our tourism product for the benefit of our visitors and those who call our island nation home," stated Director of Tourism, Regina LaBega.