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Tourism Industry Association loses support from some members following split on decision to re-open airport

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Posted: Friday, June 12, 2020. 5:40 pm CST.

By BBN Staff: The Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) issued a letter to its members today, affirming its commitments to them and bidding farewell to others that have pulled their support from the association for its recent decisions regarding COVID-19.

The BTIA wrote that it cannot appease all members all the time, but that it has concentrated its lobbying efforts to look after the best interests of members in the short, medium, and long-term.

“A few high profile members and corporate sponsors have informed us that they will withdraw their support of BTIA. To those, we say: Thank you very much for your past support. We sincerely appreciate the past partnership. We will continue to do everything within our reach to ensure that our industry gets back on track for the benefit of our current members and, by extension, the entire industry, which includes you. You are always welcome at the BTIA,” the BTIA said.

The association did not specify which of its members decided to leave.

This week the BTIA announced that it would not lobby for a specific opening date of the Philip Goldson International Airport (PGIA) based on the mixed results of its stakeholder survey. The association said that the results were mixed, with half of the respondents in favor of reopening the PGIA on July 1 while the over half were divided on later dates that extended all the way to December.

With tourism taking the hardest economic hit from the COVID-19 pandemic, companies countrywide are calling for the reopening of the PGIA for international tourists, among them is the Tropic Air, which issued a release on Sunday calling for the reopening and for the BTIA to support its decision.

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