|Costa Rica officially enters the World Competition for the Attraction of Investments in Tourism by holding a specialized meeting on the subject, on November 13th and 14th, at the Real Intercontinental Hotel, which will be attended by high-level entrepreneurs from Asia, Middle East, and America.
This is the Conference specializing in sustainable investments in hospitality and tourism, an event that Costa Rica will hold for the 1st time, while in other countries such as the United States, it has been done for 4 decades.
Meanwhile, the cameras of the tourism sector affirmed this Monday, October 30th that they have some doubts and request explanations about the organization, who are the guests of Costa Rica, who can participate and around the mechanics of the event. It is also unclear, they said, elements about the potential investors that will arrive.
The Minister of Tourism, Mauricio Ventura, said that with this Costa Rica aims to build the third of three legs of the tourism table: one is the attraction of seats by the arrival of more airlines, another is to increase the income of tourists as a result of the most flights and the promotion and the third is the attraction of investments.
According to Ventura, the first conference held in Costa Rica has attracted representatives of companies and business groups at the level of presidents and vice-presidents, which reflects a high interest for investments in Costa Rica.
Ventura defended the investment of about US$ 500 thousand in this activity to attract investments, because comparatively with the around US$ 4,000 million annually generated by tourism is very little and because it could generate investments estimated in more than US$ 100 million per year in the medium term.
The conference is organized with the advice of the specialized company Sahic, whose president Arturo García believes that Costa Rica has taken a very important step to be on the world map and on the radar of tourism investors.
Data from the Central Bank of Costa Rica indicate that direct investment in the tourism sector is up and only in the 1st half of this year reached US$ 318 million, almost 6 times more than in the 1st half of the previous year.
These figures are intended to increase in the medium term with the attraction of businessmen interested in Costa Rica. García said that, in general, the results of the conferences to attract investments begin to be seen after about three years, but that the strategy has to start at some point.
According to García, many of the potential investors who will come to the conference in Costa Rica are the first time they arrive and represent companies that are not present in the local tourism sector.
The Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT) estimates that at least 150 visitors from abroad will be at the specialized investment conference.
In separate statements presidents of the National Tourism Chambers (Canatur), Isabel Vargas, and Costa Rican Hotels (CCH), Johnny Riba, expressed their enthusiasm for the realization of this specialized event, but also their doubts about how to choose the Costa Ricans that will be and about the speed with which it is being organized.
Vargas said he agreed that the conference is something very positive and necessary because Costa Rica has to enter to play in the big leagues of attracting investment in tourism.
“We want to participate in a serious and responsible manner and with information that is useful to the potential investor and we are worried about the short time to prepare”, Vargas said.
Meanwhile, Riba warned: “What we do not know is how the organization was, with how much anticipation, nor who the participants are, we have doubts about that and tomorrow (on Tuesday 31st) we will send them in writing to the minister”, he emphasized.
The leader also expressed his general support for the conference. “The attraction of investments”, he added, “is extremely important and is vital to maintaining the sector, what we are still trying to do is to explain more to us the mechanism, how the event will work, its dynamics”.