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Jan 11, 2011

Fate of cruise ship tourism tenders still on negotiating table

There’s a major upset to an announcement made by the prime minister on Monday that Carnival Cruise Line had agreed to a stay of execution in the new tendering policies by the cruise lines.  All day today, the newly formed association of tender operators has been meeting on what seems to be a reversal of that position by the cruise lines. One foreign operator, known as Rick O’Shea, whose name has repeatedly been called in the past two weeks, appears to be the point man for the tendering.  Late this evening, Prime Minister Barrow headed to a meeting of the boat tenders convened at the Belize Tourism Board. Earlier today, interim chairman Stanley Longsworth hinted that there was trouble when he said that the rules of engagement have somewhat shifted since the group’s initial meeting on Monday.  The ongoing negotiations are complex because it has to include the interest of more than ten independent operators whose size of investment vary. And according to Longsworth, the proposal has to be acceptable to Carnival Cruise Line.

Stanley Longsworth Sr., Pro Tem Chairman, Tender Association

“I think what has happened is that the goal post has been moved and so the game becomes longer.”

Jules Vasquez, Channel 7

“You are saying that the undertaking, the commitment that they gave the Prime Minister have not been upheld in these meetings?”

Stanley Longsworth Sr.

“Not in all its, as it is unfolding we’re finding out that, like I said, people’s positions have moved and so it becomes more complex and certainly more difficult.”

Isani Cayetano

“Mr. Longsworth I was reliably informed earlier that Rick O’Shea’s name was once again mentioned as the point man for this entire situation in terms of tendering.  Can you speak to us in some detail on that?”

Stanley Longsworth Sr.

Stanley Longsworth Sr.

“Since we’re in negotiations I don’t want to get into the specifics so I would prefer not to respond to that question.”

Jules Vasquez, Channel 7

“When you talk about goal post moving, the principal issue is that Carnival will agree to do business with this newly formed company slash group.  Is that still achievable?  Is that still on the table or is that what’s moving?”

Stanley Longsworth Sr.

“The goal post has moved and it’s difficult.  In order to be able to continue our negotiations I would prefer not to comment in any further detail.”

Jules Vasquez, Channel 7

“Where do y’all go from here?  Do y’all go back to the prime minister [and] ask for his intercession again?  How do we proceed?”

Stanley Longsworth Sr.

“Well at the moment the negotiations continue.  We are going to make a proposal to the cruise lines which will be in the best interest of ourselves of course but one that we think could be accepted and if, it depends on how they respond.”

Isani Cayetano

“Mr. Longsworth it has been said that it is sort of a conflict of interest for you to be named the pro tem chairman seeing as though you have an interest in Caribbean Shipping and some of the other tender owners were saying that you will give your fleet of boats first preference regardless.”

Stanley Longsworth Sr.

“Well first time I am hearing that one, but I would say in response that being a shipping agent places me in the right position to deal with the issues because it’s something that we have dealt with for years. Secondly I was selected by the tender owners with a unanimous note. So I don’t need to respond to that.”

Jules Vasquez, Channel 7

“But as far as you’re concerned, right now the future of the boat tenders which we left here feeling yesterday had been somewhat secured—at least in the immediate to short term—you are saying right now that the condition of those tender operators are still imperiled?”

Stanley Longsworth Sr.

“[Umm] Jules I think that there is a lot on the table, there is a lot to be negotiated and the goal posts have moved so the future, the immediate future at this point in time is uncertain.”

According to one tender operator at the meeting, the prime minister is maintaining that in telephone calls this afternoon to Ruben Rodriguez of Carnival, he was assured that the cruise line will keep its commitment to operate through the local boat tender association. What happens next is anyone’s guess, but clearly the situation is beginning to look even more complex.

Still on the issue, BTALCO this afternoon issued a release saying that it was appointed as the port and receiving agent for two catamarans consigned to Norwegian Cruise Line’s Pride of America. Those catamarans arrived in Belize at the Big Creek Port on December twenty-seventh. According to BTALCO, Mike Singh, whose name has been called in the tendering controversy, is the founder of the company but has not been engaged in the operation of the company since 2004.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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4 Responses for “Fate of cruise ship tourism tenders still on negotiating table”

  1. BZNinCALI says:

    Divide & conquer. When all of these men feared losing their livelihoods, they had enough sense to stand together. Instead of putting aside egos & focusing in how long they can drag out the extension of the implementation of Carnival’s new policy or even forcing them to back down , they are now fighting with each other. Get it together….. for Belize’s sake.

    About Mike Singh… is Evan X going to have to run a cartoon showing him in the same light he showed the ownership of Brodies years ago. If he does not own the company, who does? If the catamarans are in a state of disrepair as described by someone a few days ago, who do they really belong?

  2. REGGIE says:

    MR.SABAL MAKE ALL YOU GUY LOOK LIKE WIMP.YOU SEE WHAT HAPPEN IN DANGRIGA WITH THE BIDDING FOR THE PROJECT,AND LOOK AT WHAT MR.SABAL DID HE PROTEST AND GET ATTENTION AND MAKE THINGS HAPPEN THE CRUISE SHIP OWNER IS BRING THE G.O.B. TO KISS THEIR TOES.THIS IS THE TIME THE PM SHOULD BE A DICTATOR AND LET THEM KNOW THIS IS MY PEOPLE AND YOU WILL NOT DO WHAT YOU WANT,MY WAY OR MOVE ON.BUT BECAUSE YOU GUYS DEPEND ON THE CRUISE MONEY AND WAS PAID UNDER THE TABLE IT COME BACK TO HAUNT YOU ALL.JUST LIKE THE OIL COMPANY.LET THE PEOPLE KNOW YOUR HANDS IS IN THE COOKIE JAR.BE HONEST FOR ONCE.THEIR A FEW MINISTER THAT PM CAN’T TOUCH SING /PERDOMO/VEGAS/AND A FEW MORE.CASTRO HAD NO MONEY SO HE HAD TO GO.LOOK AT THE IMMIGRATION PROBLEM UNDER THE RUG.MY PEOPLE I THINK THEY WILL USED THE MILITARY AGAINST YOU GUYS WHEN YOU START UR PROTEST.YOU NEED ATTENTION PROTEST AT THE USA EMBASSY. LET THE WORLD SEE WHART CARNIVAL N THE REST OF CRUSIE SHIP COMPANY DO TO A SMALL COUNTRY WITH A CORRUPT G.O.B.

  3. REGGIE says:

    SORRY IN THE COMMENT I MAKE I USED THE WRONG NAME IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN GLEN LEWIS NOT MR SABAL. POWER TO YOU BRO.THE GARIFUNA N MAYA PEOLE HOLD THEIR GROUNDS.

  4. BZNinCALI says:

    What kind of deal does Mr. O Shea have with Mike Singh? O Shea submitted a proposal to Carnival which was quietly accepted. The catamarans came through Singh’s company & to appease the masses, someone conveniently mentioned that Tino Castillo’s name as the person who got the contract. Now we are telling our people that they need to bow down to a foreigner in our land if they intend to eat. When are our politicians going to learn?

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