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New Tourism Bill in Panama. Great Idea, But Over Selective

Article Summary:

A new pending tourism bill in Panama will aid large tourism operators who have invested over US $5 Million in the country but leaves small and micro-tourism operators hanging dry . The Tourism authority of Panama is proposing breaking the country into eight tourism zones within the interior of country. The operators in these zones will receive specialized grants and investments. Small scale and micro-tourism are in an uproar with the proposal saying the government is forgetting the back bone of the tourist industry; the local tourists who they serve.

Photo Credit: Panama America

Original Article Text From Panama America via Google Translate :

Project Seeks to Encourage Tourism Development Zones

Small and medium tourism entrepreneurs are hoping pending legislation will boost the Tourism Authority of Panama (ATP) for the next year to encourage investment in tourism in the interior.

The minister of ATP, Solomon Shamah, said it is important to promote the activity primarily in the interior. “Currently we are in consultation with the various tourism associations,” he said. He said that the Government’s interest to support the tourism inside the country. He said the goal is to increase the amount of investments and grant subsidies tour operators or receptors, whose only business is promoting tourism in this part of the country, where there are attractions.

He said that this new initiative is scheduled for the first two months of next year. He said that experts of the ATP polished the document and later analyze it in conjunction with private enterprise. “It is essential investment in eight different tourist zones established in the Law 8 so they can be benefited from these incentive tourism,” he said.

For his part, Nelson Cedeno, hotel district of Las Tablas, Los Santos, said the Azuero Peninsula has a variety of tourist sites, culture, traditions and crafts, but there is no adequate infrastructure. He said that, although do not know the details, the standard not benefit the small and micro entrepreneurs. He said that as far as aware, the scope of this new law is for investments that are over five million dollars. He said that if that is so, the micro and small entrepreneurs not only Azuero region but other parts of the country may not have access to these incentives.

Urged the ATP that before the reform of the law go to the National Assembly will make a greater national consultation with those who really pay the service. “It is important to make adjustments to that amount and to consult with all stakeholders in the issue,” he said. According to Cedeno, entrepreneurs involved in tourism activity are of the conviction that the tourism development is mostly in the domestic market than foreign tourists. He said that domestic tourists have all year, while the foreigner is coming to be a complement to tourism.

He added that they have good prospects, but from October to June, when their countries are cool season. Cedeño said that tourism marketers are still struggling and the proof is the promotion of a tourism fair with the participation of exhibitors from South America. “Private investment in different sectors of inland bet the farm house, where they promote the work of the field, such as milking, horseback riding, spas, and hiking the mill, “he said.

Link to Original Article:

From Panama America

  • Ianflint

    This is true that the small business in tourism needs to be part of the overall organization. I have cabins for rent in Cerra Punta and have had no luck getting the local tourism to come and add my business to their list. I have been waiting over half a year for them to come up and see my cabins and add it to the local list of places to rent for tourists. http://ianflintlivecom.ipage.com this is the web site.

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