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Jul 23, 2014

Minister of Tourism Says N.G.O.s Are Too Pessimistic About Tourism Development

The Puerto Azul Project has been mired in controversy since it came to light that Italian developers were preparing to invest in the development. On Tuesday, the environmental community reacted negatively to government giving its stamp of approval to the developers of Puerto Azul to proceed with an environmental impact assessment. The EIA will determine whether or not the controversy multimillion dollar tourism project can indeed become a reality at Northern Two Caye.  Despite seeking answers from government prior to a terms of reference being granted for an EIA, that attempt by the consortium of N.G.O.s was unsuccessful.  This morning, Minister of Tourism Manuel Heredia Junior told News Five that it is still too early to divulge details of what is currently taking place with the proposed project.  They are, however, proceeding systematically with a team of renowned environmentalists who have been working closely with the Department of the Environment.


Manuel Heredia Jr., Minister of Tourism

Manuel Heredia Jr.

“It’s premature to be giving details of things that are happening.  What is happening now is that these people have been given the green light to go ahead with their EIA [Environmental Impact Assessment] so that we can know after that.  They will present their EIA, the technical people will look at that and then we will be advised as to what is the next step.  At this point, as far as I am concerned, they have brought a team of environmental people and they, not only are they environmental people but first class environmental people, to look at the site and they have been there for a while, a few of them, looking at every aspect over there and then they will go ahead and do their EIA that they can present to our technical people where, I think, most of the N.G.O.s sit on that board, APAMO, where they make the decision along with Mr. Alegria and those people.  So we are advised as to what will be the next step forward.  At this point I believe that even myself, I cannot tell you if the project will be a reality or not but what I can tell you is that even, whatever happens, at the end of the day I think that these people have given so much promotion to Belize that it’s a win-win thing.  Belize will be… If you look around today, this is one of the best Julies ever in the history of this country.  It is because of publicity that this B.T.B., our stakeholders and people like this that advertise Belize so much, that is making this possible.  But let us sit down and [have] consultations, but to be second guessing about what will happen I think is premature.”


Isani Cayetano

“How is weighted against the fact that the very same conservation community posed certain questions that they had wanted government to answer and those specific concerns haven’t been addressed but a green light is being given for an EIA.”


Manuel Heredia Jr.

“There is a process.  In every part of the world, with every government, past administration, there is a process that you have to go through.  I do respect the N.G.O.s but they know fully well what is the process.  But what I have seen with N.G.O.s is that anything that you will do in Belize there is a negativity.  We need to come up with some solutions, nothing is wrong with criticizing but come up with solutions, give us alternatives as to what will be better, but to be fully negative about something, I think, is irresponsible.”

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3 Responses for “Minister of Tourism Says N.G.O.s Are Too Pessimistic About Tourism Development”

  1. Jason says:

    Am getting tired of every damn ngo and well fed and well paid environmentalist who just wants to hear himself preach and be on TV. Let the development come and bring me a job. If you want to make an omlette, you have to break a few eggs.

  2. fureal says:

    @Jason you are so selfish and it seems that you think with the bottom of your feet. Look at the long term damage this is going to have on the environment. Our children will not have anything to enjoy when they become adults. Heredia probably got his millions paid off to support this project and he has to ensure that it comes otherwise he might have to give back the money. Please these politicians are filty rich and we are here still poor something that they want. They enjoy seeing us poor and having to go beg them for the next meal and pay our bills. Nonsense stop wait for job to come to you create your own job and grow the economy. YOU AND UR CROWD ARE WASTE OF TIME AND ONLY SEE RIGHT TO THE TOP OF YOUR NOSE!

  3. Rod says:

    Well said fureal god someone with some brains I thought there wasn’t any left in this country you are right heredia already got paid off just like him and his crowd. Vacationing in the riviera instead of putting that money to good use like building a good hospital in San Pedro. How many have died needlessly because they couldn’t. Get the proper care they needed. He should be locked up fu thief.

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