BVI News

Gov’t not disclosing tourism strategy ’cause it doesn’t have one


Opposition Leader Marlon Penn has said the government’s refusal to disclose its marketing strategy for tourism is proof they don’t have one.

During the recent April 20 sitting of the House of Assembly, Premier and Minister of Tourism, Andrew Fahie said he will not be making the strategy public because he does not want to give away the territory’s competitive advantage.

Penn has described the Premier’s rationale as illogical.

“Since when has that (the tourism strategy) been privileged information when your marketing a territory?” Penn questioned during his political party’s ‘NDP Radio’ show last evening.

“People need to know what you’re marketing. If I am coming to the Virgin Islands, I need to know what’s your strategy. What am I to expect when I’m coming to the Virgin Islands. That should not be proprietary information. But the reality is that the government doesn’t have a plan,” he further argued.

Suspicious timing

The Opposition Leader also raised suspicion about the timing of a Request For Proposal (RFP) document the government released recently.

Two days after being questioned about the tourism strategy, the government issued RFP soliciting bids from contractors to develop a national tourism plan for the BVI.

“How coincidental,” Penn commented.

According to the document, the purpose of the Tourism Plan is to improve the competitiveness of the BVI as a tourist and business destination. The plan is also intended to promote the destination and expand the tourism collaboration between private and public sectors.

Additionally, the plan seeks to identify and improve the enabling environment for the sustained and resilient growth of the BVI tourism sector, as well as grow investments and revenue produced by the BVI tourism sectors.

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  1. Hottie says:

    Its not often that I agree with the leader of the opposition but I suspect he is right this time.

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    • Doh says:

      Effin brilliant

      WHAT WE’VE ALL BEEN SAYING. But thanks for playing.


      Carry on

      Like 12
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    • CUTTIE says:

      The Opposition Leader is 100% correct in my book.

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      • What says:

        The opposition leader is an i***t. He sees nothing good in this country he is vying hard to become premier off. Not my vote. He has no vision and no solutions. Just criticize all the time. You

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    • Really says:

      I heard the Premier when they were in the HOA telling the opposition that they can view their plans. So did the leader of the opposition did that? If then he should state that he did and that the government has no plan. But just getting up and making these kinds of statements says a lot about the leader of the opposition. Opposing just because. He needs to come better.

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  2. BVI Business says:

    Hello. Its not a marketing strategy if no one knows about it! Thats called doing nothing.
    Take a look at Turks & Caicos…they have done a great job of marketing their islands.

    Like 21
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    • To BVI Business says:

      You all are so selfish and worthless minded. The BVI continues to do well to hold its own during Covid-19 and all Marlon and a few of you do is try to make it seem otherwise. Always looking to see how to try to tear down the Government but it will not work.

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      • @ to bvi business says:

        You are clearly not running a company which is tourism based or rely on tourism.
        charter boats are so few. Xmas week 50 boats chartered insead of the 500 we normally see during peak time.
        Restaurants are operating at about 25%. The only option was to cut staff.
        We held on as long as we could but all these false openings crippled us as we had no idea what the government plan was.
        So finally cut staff so try and claw our way to October in hope we can see some tourism next season. Please make yourself aware as to what is actually going on out in the business community as the government has no idea. They are also unwilling to listen to the steak holders who have a vested interest in getting the borders open safely. None of us want COVID here and we will protect the BVI.

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        • If only says:

          Restaurants are running at nothing like 25% on average. Many have closed. The hotels that are open are at 5% if they are lucky, charter boat fleets have been halved and what’s left is running at 5% of capacity.

      • Lol says:

        hold your own – lol. Brave leaders lead. That means shutting down like NZ or not, Like USVI. Either way is their decision but at least they tell folks what they are going to do and then do it.

        BVI is trying to do both, be shut down and be open for business, Make up your mind and let us know that’s all. Business will decide what to do. Right now all tourism business in the BVI is running on fumes. Every penny you spend on marketing at this point is money flushed down the toilet.

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  3. Truth says:

    Absolutely true.

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  4. privilige says:

    and apparently kids are being allowed in with vaccinated parents, tourist board says so, scrub says so, but the government is saying nothing????

    Like 18
  5. Resident says:

    He is right, the portal needs to go it’s too hard to enter the bvi even for citizens

    Like 12
    • thoughtful sailor says:

      That is for sure. I live here. I am from a tourist industry. I know the people I need to know and the buttons to push. Even with their kind and industrious help, it was difficult to get back in when I had to leave for three days. In fact, I was delayed a further four days. The protocols and portal are really balky. I can only imagine what tourists think.

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  6. USVI says:


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    • @USVI says:

      We know that you are a fake but if USVI is doing good then fine. What is BVI’s we will get it and Marlon and his few haters cannot stop it.

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  7. Blasé says:

    Thing is with thear politicians they silent when they in and making valid points and communicating when they out, get seasoned politicians out of office they corrupting the young ones.

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  8. Anonymous says:

    From BVI News – Jan 4, 2021 – “Junior Minister for Tourism Sharie De Castro is to be assigned a tourism advisor and a special committee, which will assist with achieving the goal of establishing a National Tourism Plan by December 2021.”

    So now there may be another “strategy”? But it’s secret! What the *** is going on?? I hope the Premier has a secret plan to dig out of the holes he seems to enjoy making for himself……

    Like 14
  9. the watcher says:

    BVI News Jan 4, 2021: “Junior Minister for Tourism Sharie De Castro is to be assigned a tourism advisor and a special committee, which will assist with achieving the goal of establishing a National Tourism Plan by December 2021.”


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  10. YOUTH says:

    Marlon is a mischiefmaker

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  11. heckler says:

    The only plan that the VIP has is how to make their cronies richer

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  12. Come on says:

    Every minute Marlon and just some of you looking for any way to try to make the Government look bad. Never once did Marlon mention the good things the government is doing even in terms of Tourism in the middle of dealing with covid. This is now pure ignorance by the Leader of the Opposition.

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    • @Come on says:

      Are you f**king mental? What tourism? The Government has DROPPED THE BALL ON EVERYTHING!!!!! All the Government needed to do is be straight with the people and even if there are persons that would’ve disagreed with them, you couldn’t say they didn’t have a plan. If the intention is to keep the BVI closed until October, then say that. If we will be reopening fully in June, let’s ACT LIKE IT. Nobody is causing confusion except the Government itself, people are hurting and you sit there in government offices earning your monthly salary and throwing words. The struggle is real and a lot of people are on their last while this Government play games and act like a bully with everything from Tourism, Economy, Education, all a big f**king mess and everyone should keep quiet?

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  13. Watcher says:

    Penn always in the news when he in he quiet like how mark missing from the 4th right now

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  14. Hmmmm says:

    Marlon what are your plans to make sure the BVI tax payers get back their monies from:
    1) Georgie Hill
    2) The planes
    3) The Pier Park project
    4) The East End/Long Look sewage project money that Marlon sat quietly and let his government take from us in the east and put in the Pier Park Project leaving us in the east to walk in filt and now also have to listen to filt. Marlon we had enough of your games.

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    • @Hmmmm says:

      The VIP has been the government for the last 2 full years, let us talk about what they are going to do to move the Territory forward. Marlon and NDP lost at the polls due to their issues, let’s talk about the current issues and how we are to get out of them.

  15. Congratulations says:

    We must conngratulate Marlon on perfecting foolishness.

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  16. Tim says:

    There is nothing to market till the BVI opens up and reduce fees and procedures are simplified …

    compare the BVI to USVI or Bahamas …

    so many other options that simply put: are simpler and more accessible.

  17. team work says:

    come each other! don’t point fingers

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  18. @ congratulations says:

    It’s not the messenger it’s the message / is it fact or fiction? / umyou and the rest CANARIES just keep singing the same old song like a broken record ( whatever is essential for the advancement of the country needs to be our first priority instead of fighting down eachother and pointing a finger at (RACISM UK JASPERT and a whole bundle of s**t

  19. Informed says:

    They released two marketing ideas so far. Bring in a professions Puerto Rican Company and then allow Digital Nomads to come here and work.
    Its nothing new but the other islands jumped on this a year ago.
    The plan is not released as its just copying other islands ideas.

  20. wasting money says:

    How about we put it to the high schools and college, for the students to come up with a plan for tourism. They couldn’t do any worse than what is currently on the table and it would be a lot cheaper than paying yet another “consultant” for their wisdom which we then do nothing with. Same old, same old BVI.

  21. Just questioning... says:

    A new BVITB press release refers about the recent appointment of a new global company (Aviareps) in charge of the promotion of the destination in Europe. Has anyone seen a public RFP describing the strategy explaining such a change? It looks that Scandinavian markets are now becoming a priority with public funds engaged… Would be curious to read about a market research and strategic guidelines that explain that choice of targeted source markets and company to serve the BVITB there and in other countries (Germany, France, Italy…)

  22. Boo says:

    No lies detected…straight facts. Like everything else they have no plan just gunslinging and dictating like the Wild West with Tonto and the Lone Ranger

  23. Excuses Govt says:

    They said during their campain they will be govt in the sunshine, full transperency. Now we need bright lights to see what they are doing….Its all in darkness

  24. Harris says:

    Penn have so much chat these days

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  25. Shame says:

    Real talk… It’s always some story with this Primier… They say the Junior Minister for tourism have until the end of the year to come up with a plan now the plan secret to preserve strategic advantage… What strategic advantage when you behind!? He deny the UK ship for border protection then came out and explain why he try to refuse it; then turn around and say he didn’t refuse it is he asked for it. Its always some cockamamie story leaving the public not knowing what to actually believe. Then gonna sprinkle a lil of god name on it to make the lies a little more palatable to some of us.

  26. Shaft says:


  27. aphorism says:

    Nobody plans to fail but many fail to plan.

  28. Really? says:

    Was there an established plan that the now government threw out the window when it was working excellently well? If they (NDP) left one why isn’t the statement saying “VIP threw out a proper plan to work with nothing, what a shame!” Can he truly say that? However important your job is to talk, please make sure you are telling the complete truth.

  29. Tourist says:

    Secret marketing campaigns are an oxymoron.

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