Above: Trinidad (CJ Photo)
By the Caribbean Journal staff
The greater Caribbean region is now the world’s first-ever “Sustainable Tourism Zone,” following ratification by member states of the Association of Caribbean States.
The convention creating the Sustainable Tourism Zone officially entered into force on Nov. 6; it has been a major priority of the ACS, a regional political grouping.
“Protecting and guaranteeing tourism as a long-term activity was the main consideration in seeking to establish the Caribbean region as a Sustainable Tourism Zone,” the ACS said in a statement.
The grouping called the zone a “geographically determined cultural, socioeconomic and biologically rich and diverse unit, in which tourism development will depend on the sustainability and the principles of integration, cooperation and consensus, aimed at facilitating the integrated development of the Greater Caribbean.”
The ACS also said the establishment of the “Sustainable Tourism Zone of the Greater Caribbean” would help “position the region as a leader in the new era of responsible tourism.”
The ACS will soon begin a process to select and evaluate destinations for inclusion in the STZC, using “Regional Sustainable Tourism Indicators” to harmonize the criteria.
The convention establishing the zone was first signed by heads of states and governments of the ACS in 2001.