Reunion: International Meeting on Sustainable Development

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The Indian Ocean Vanilla Island of Reunion is organizing an International Meeting on Sustainable Development from the 21 to the 23 November 2018. The 1st Vice President of the Club Export Reunion, Mr. Francois Mandroux was in Seychelles with a Reunion Delegation to impress on the Seychelles Government and island’s Private Sector Trade on the importance for Seychelles to be present alongside the other Indian Ocean Vanilla islands of Mauritius, Madagascar, Comoros and Mayotte as well as coastal states from the African mainland such as South Africa and Mozambique to name but a few and countries from the Asian block.
H.E. Lionel Majeste-Larrouy, the French Ambassador in Seychelles was present at meetings at Eden Bleu Hotel with Francois Mandroux, the 1st Vice President Club Export Reunion and his delegation. H.E. the French Ambassador has been personally behind the development of more trade between the islands and Reunion which today sees Seychelles exporting more to Reunion that vice versa. The Seychelles private sector trade was represented by Iouana Pillay, the SG of the SCCI (Seychelles Chamber of Commerce and Industries) and Madame Pillay has echoed her support for the November meeting in Reunion which will see ten Seychellois Companies and the local press invited through the SCCI to join Regional partners at the International Meeting in Reunion. The Sea Weed fertilizer Business of Bernard Port Louis in Baie Ste Anee Praslin was one product tabled and discussed as an example of needed products for Reunion’s sugarcane plantations that could be exhibited in this November meeting.
The Club Export of Reunion Island is celebrating its 20th Anniversary since it was launched and rallies the private sector trade that targets the export business. The International Meeting being planned for November will put products of the region as a whole forward and will see Reunion as the island working with the Region. Reunion Island wants to ensure that the Indian Ocean countries are working more together. The challenge that remains is still a largely inadequate air and sea connectivity schedule that could enhance trade and tourism between the islands and the region as a whole.

Air Austral, Air Madagascar and EWA of Mayotte are all now part of the same group and have confirmed that they are willing to relook at Inter Island connectivity. This comes at a right time as Africa is also relooking at Brand Africa and rewriting its own narrative. Air Connectivity is an important part of this narrative. Reunion is France and the European Union in the Indian Ocean and can become the bridge between Africa and Asia with Europe.

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Alain St Ange has been working in the tourism business since 2009. He was appointed as the Director of Marketing for Seychelles by President and Minister of Tourism James Michel. He was appointed as the Director of Marketing for Seychelles by President and Minister of Tourism James Michel. After one year of After one year of service, he was promoted to the position of CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board. In 2012 the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands regional Organization was formed and St Ange was appointed as the first president of the organization. In a 2012 cabinet re-shuffle, St Ange was appointed as Minister of Tourism and Culture which he resigned on 28 December 2016 in order to pursue a candidacy as Secretary General of the World Tourism Organisation. At the UNWTO General Assembly in Chengdu in China, a person who was being sought after for the “Speakers Circuit” for tourism and sustainable development was Alain St.Ange. St.Ange is the former Seychelles Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine who left office in December last year to run for the position of Secretary General of the UNWTO. When his candidature or document of endorsement was withdrawn by his country just a day before the elections in Madrid, Alain St.Ange showed his greatness as a speaker when he addressed the UNWTO gathering with grace, passion, and style. His moving speech was recorded as the one on the best marking speeches at this UN international body. African countries often remember his Uganda address for the East Africa Tourism Platform when he was a guest of honor. As former Tourism Minister, St.Ange was a regular and popular speaker and was often seen addressing forums and conferences on behalf of his country. His ability to speak ‘off the cuff’ was always seen as a rare ability. He often said he speaks from the heart. In Seychelles he is remembered for a marking address at the official opening of the island’s Carnaval International de Victoria when he reiterated the words of John Lennon famous song… ” you may say I am a dreamer, but I am not the only one. One day you will all join us and the world will be better as one”. The world press contingent gathered in Seychelles on the day ran with the words by St.Ange which made headlines everywhere. St.Ange delivered the keynote address for the “Tourism & Business Conference in Canada” Seychelles is a good example for sustainable tourism. This is therefore not surprising to see Alain St.Ange being sought after as a speaker on the international circuit. Member of Travelmarketingnetwork.