-- Hotels, 1/29/2009 1:38:00 PM Belize City, Belize – January 29, 2009 –
The Government of Belize (GOB) has committed to a four-year, $13.5 million dollar plan to promote
and practice responsible tourism development in the country. The new sustainable tourism initiative
outlines infrastructural projects that focus on the long-term preservation of Belize’s stunning
natural resources, as well as developments in four of the country’s more popular tourism destinations,
including San Ignacio in the Cayo District, Placencia in the Stann Creek District, San Pedro on
Ambergris Caye and Belize City.
“Our focus is to help build Belize as an emerging destination in a responsible way, thereby setting
the tone for future developments and advances throughout the country,” said Tracy Panton,
Director of Tourism for the Belize Tourism Board (BTB). “The initiatives presented in Belize’s
new plan will promote sustainability and foster mutually beneficial relationships between residents
In Belize City, infrastructural developments will include a pedestrian link from the cruise ship port
to the city’s downtown area, allowing locals to benefit from cruise tourism; as well as re-surfacing of
the street, installation of wider sidewalks, lighting and landscaping.
In Placencia, a natural disaster management plan will be put into place, along with the construction of
an extended pier, allowing visiting yachts and boats to dock and access the area.
In San Pedro, an outlet mall will be built on the western side of the town, which will create new jobs
and local opportunities for growth.
And, in San Ignacio, the sustainable tourism projects will focus on improving accessibility to, and
preservation of, key archeological sites. In addition, a town cultural center will be developed to help
tourists access all the services San Ignacio has to offer.
Complementing the new initiative in May will be the third annual World Conference on Responsible Tourism
by the International Centre for Responsible Tourism (ICRT). The BTB recently announced its sponsorship
of the event which focuses on the responsibility for sustainable tourism and addresses local economic
development through tourism, the impact of second homes or condo hotels, the impact of mass tourism
to the marine environment as well as climate change.
For additionl information on the conference, scheduled for May 19 - 23, 2009 in Belize, or information
regarding the country’s involvement with ICRT, please visit www.icrtbelize.org.
As one of the last unspoiled places on earth, Belize offers travelers the richly rewarding authenticity they
seek in a Caribbean getaway. With direct flights from the U.S. and Canada, this tropical paradise is nestled
between Mexico to the north and Guatemala to the west and south. For generations, the English-speaking
people of Belize have demonstrated a commitment to preserving the country’s unique charms.
Belize offers a land rich in natural beauty and steep in the history and culture of its Maya past.
Renowned for having the second largest barrier reef in the world, Belize’s pristine waters, exotic
marine and wildlife, lush unspoiled landscapes and superb diving truly make it Mother Nature’s Best
For more information on how you can "Be one with Belize", visit www.travelbelize.org.