Malta the tourism hub for European and Mediterranean Trade Union Movements


Parliamentary Secretary for Tourism Dr. Mario Demarco met a delegation from the General Workers Union made up of the President Mr. Victor Carachi and Tony Coleiro, Consultant for the same union and Mr. Alex McFadden, President of TUC Merseyside UK, during which they discussed the possibility to explore more a particular niche market, mainly from and to the UK, which is becoming interesting and lucrative to those destinations, mainly from European and Asian Countries, that have already started offering holiday packages, conference and incentive packages to trade union movements all over the world.

Tony Coleiro informed the Parliamentary Secretary that, through the Union’s International Division, they managed to penetrate into various Trade Unions Movements all over the world, with the intention to promote Malta and Gozo and also to use Malta as a hub for the inbound and outbound tourism for union members in other countries.

The feedback was very positive, and to this effect the first positive contact came from the Trade Union Council – TUC in UK. This will give them the opportunity to market and promote the Maltese Islands with all Regional TUC’s Branches in the UK and other affiliated Trade Union Movements worldwide. Local Union Members will also benefit from attractive holiday packages offered to them in the UK.

The meeting with Dr. Demarco was very positive and both sides agreed to establish an Anglo-Maltese Forum to see ways and means as to how to increase traffic to and from the UK with the participation of the Hospitality and Food Section of the GWU, Malta Tourism Authority, Merseyside TUC, Air Malta and MHRA. Dr. Demarco gave his commitment to provide assistance for various initiatives which includes a familiarization trip for British Trade Unions journalists, local UK Press and tourist trade journalists to visit Malta this year, 2008. He also promised his personal commitment and his Ministerial support for the success of this project.

Mr. McFadden, Merseyside TUC president, also committed himself on behalf of his Union, to organize a trip to Malta in autumn for the Trade Union Delegation made up of Regional TUC Secretary Generals’ and Unity Trust Bank to set up an understanding of the local product and also procedures to assist British union members. Mr. McFadden will also be working jointly with the focus group to promote holiday packages for the Trade Union Pensioner Groups at favorable rates this winter season, i.e. November 2008 to May 2009. GWU and TUC have also stressed the point that all service providers involved in this project, and that are unionized, will be prioritized, although present non-unionized entities will be considered for this project where appropriate.

It was also agreed that the new Forum will target two European Trade Union Congresses per year to take place in Malta 2009. TUC Merseyside will provide all the necessary facilities and opportunities to enable the focus group to organize conferences and promotional campaigns during TUC regional congresses in the UK and to gain support and understanding of the Maltese product as a destination for leisure, conferences and events. Air Malta will also be directly involved to get the best possible deals fro Trade Union Visitors from the UK and other European Trade Union Centers. Merseyside TUC will seek to bring in the best practice in terms of education work within British Trade unions, ’Union Learn Programs,’ and European TU projects for the Maltese Islands.

Eventually their promotional campaigns will be reaching the following regions in the UK:

Midlands: Birmingham, Chesterfield, Coventry, Derby, Hereford, Kidderminster, Leicester, Lincoln, Mansfield, Northampton, Nottingham, Rugby, Shrewsbury, Solihull, Stafford, Stoke-on-Trent, Walsall, Wolverhampton, Worcester

Northern: Alnwick, Barrow-in-Furness, Carlisle, Darlington, Durham, Middlesbrough, Newcastle, Penrith, Stockton-on-Tees, Sunderland, Workington

North West: Blackburn, Blackpool, Bolton, Burnly, Chester, Chester, Crewe, Lancaster, Liverpool, Manchester, Preston, Salford, St Helens, Warrington, Widnes, Wigan

Southern and Eastern: Basingstoke, Bedford, Brighton, Bury St Edmonds, Cambridge, Canterbury, Chatham, Colchester, Dunstable, Greater London, Hemel Hempstead, Ipswich, Isle of Wight, Kings Lynn, Lowestoft, Milton Keynes, Newhaven, Norwich, Oxford, Peterborough, Portsmouth, Reading, Sidcup, Sittingbourne, Slough, Southampton, Stevenage, Tonbridge, Watford

South West: Bath, Bournemouth, Bristol, Cheltenham, Exeter, Gloucester, Plymouth, Poole, Salisbury, Taunton, Truro, Weymouth, Yeovil

Yorkshire and the Humber: Barnsley, Bradford, Grimsby, Harrogate, Hull, Leeds, Northallerton, Scarborough, Scunthorpe, Sheffield, Wakefield, Whitby, York

Scotland: Aberdeen, Ayr, Cumbernauld, Dumbarton, Dundee, East Kilbride, Edinburgh, Falkirk, Glasgow, Greenock, Hamilton, Inverness, Kirkcaldy, Livingston, Motherwell, Paisley, Perth, Stirling

Wales TUC: Aberystwyth, Bangor, Bridgend, Carmarthen, Cardiff, Holyhead, Llandadno, Merthyr Tydfil, Newport, Port Talbot, Prestatyn, Rhyl, Swansea, Wrexham