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Sep 2, 2013

Government goes full steam ahead with NCL Project

Dean Barrow

The memorandum of understanding between the government of Belize and Norwegian Cruise Lines is a done deal, and the parties are not allowing any grass to grow under their feet. M.O.U.s are not legally binding, but contracts are, and one is very much in the works. Despite much opposition to and many concerns about the mega-million dollar cruise tourism destination planned for the south, Prime Minister Dean Barrow says that a few minor details aside, the project has gotten the green light. Two of those minor details which somehow got lost in the negotiations and in the M.O.U. are the exclusive use of the destination by N.C.L. and the diversion of other cruise lines to the south. Whether that was a miscommunication, a misunderstanding or a typo – the P.M. says that G.O.B. is not inclined to budge. But with that said – if you have a problem with the project, you’re just going to have to get over it. 

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“There’s to be no diversion of the current Belize City cause, and there’s to be no use of that port by ships other than NCL ships. When I went back I didn’t see that in the MOU. We had made that clear in Cabinet. I don’t know how it didn’t find its way into the MOU. But I’m saying, and I’m putting Norwegian on notice, and it’s not like I’m taking them by surprise because this was our position throughout. The binding agreement will make that absolutely clear. We are concerned…we want this project, but we are concerned about overuse, we are concerned about overcrowding. So that is why…Norwegian wanted two berthing facilities you know…two docks to bring two ships and we said no. Even the one hundred and fifty days a year multiplied by the number of visitors that they will bring I think puts us close to what we believe at this juncture is the acceptable limit. So while I don’t want to slam the door completely shut, as of now I would repeat my position that when we get into the formal binding agreement we would stick to the position which is that it is used by you, Norwegian, and nobody else. And if that’s one hundred and fifty days a year, then so be it and in fact that might be for the best in terms of not wanting as I said to get into a situation where there is overuse.”

 

Reporter

“So sir, in effect the Barrow administration is straying away from the National sustainable Tourism Master Plan in terms of allowing mass tourism down South. Shouldn’t that be concerning to the public out there?”

 

Dean Barrow

“Circumstances alter cases. Minister Hulse already answered that question when you asked it and when Adele asked it. Why are we going over old ground? Except Norwegian, when it comes to doing the legally binding agreement, decides not to play ball in terms of our non-negotiable conditions…this thing is on. So if there are still people with reservations…get over it.”

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3 Responses for “Government goes full steam ahead with NCL Project”

  1. Stanley says:

    Get over it stuart-game over

  2. Betty says:

    As tourists we have traveled 22 visits mostly to Placencia and we find this decision just horrifying to destroy such prestin land and waters, ,,for what money to line your pockets!!! Corruption is every where

  3. Hatari says:

    “Get over it” . . . how arrogant can he be? To hell with the tourism industry stakeholders, to hell with the environment, and to hell with the Master Plan! Well, To Hell with you Mr. Barrow. History will prove this to be a disasterous and corrupt scam on the people of Belize.

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