The Association of Canarian Tourist Municipalities, the AMTC, say they defend unity, not uniformity
José Miguel Rodríguez Fraga: “We are not trying to breach unity, but people have to understand that unity is not the same as uniformity and as destinations we have our own identity”.
The AMTC, the Association of Canarian Tourist Municipalities, outlined their strategy for Fitur, the Spanish Tourism Trade Fair, at a press conference this Friday, where, for the first time, the association will have its own stand and a series of activities geared towards working with professionals and sector representatives at the fair in Madrid next week.
Attending the press conference were Adeje mayor José Miguel Rodríguez Fraga; Arona mayor José Julián Mena, Guía de Isora mayor Pedro Martín and the tourism councillors for Turismo de San Bartolomé de Tirajana, Ramón Suárez and for Mogán, Mencey Navarro. The five AMTC representatives have bee working together for many months to prepare the stand which will reflect the work of the five boroughs in what is the most important economic sector in the Canaries, tourism. A space that will reflect modernity, using the latest technological innovations, touch screen presentations, video presentations, meeting zones for each borough, a space reserved for visiting press and sector agents as well as work space for representatives from each borough.
As president of the association, Rodríguez Fraga said they were in preparation for “one of the most important tourism fairs in the world” and the presence of the association was the result of reflection over time and something indicated in the constitution of the association since 2016.
In 2017 Adeje and Arona shared the ‘Tenerife Sur’ stand at the fair, notching up 10 thousand direct visits, 40 thousand indirect contacts with 150 concrete actions with professionals. The figures give an idea of the volume of work which can be generated by this year’s stand shared by 5 boroughs. This in turn can “improve competitivity, something that is vital for the development of our tourism strategy in the Canaries where we must be as aware of quality as we are of quantity”, commented the mayor of Arona. “If our boroughs benefit, so does Tenerife, the Canary Islands and Spain.”
The mayors and councillors said the association would have three official events in Fitur, a general presentation of their strategy, a general meeting and a meeting with other Canarian representatives who wished to attend. Each of the five boroughs would also be engaged in individual activities, meeting with sector professionals, press, travel agencies, etc. “We are not going to Fitur just to hand out leaflets or gifts, our presence here with this stand and our activities are designed to create new contacts, meet professionals and those who have influence in our destinations, because as well as our identification as Canarian resorts we also have our individual identities” said the Guía de Isora mayor.
“We are not interested in breaching unity, but people have to understand that unity isn’t the same as uniformity” explained the Adeje mayor, adding that each destination has a duty to explain and outline their individual offer and particular attractions. The Mogán councillor added that a debate about unified representation had been opened up and created a high level of expectation “because we have an important part to play and something to say within the tourism industry, and this is a way of measuring the potential of the five boroughs that we are representing here”.
All the representatives made it clear that they are not seeking confrontation with the bodies that represent tourism at insular and regional levels. “This is not about political allegiances”, the San Bartolomé councillor explained, “we all have one goal, to improve our destination and the Canary Islands and that is the same goal as the Spanish Association of Tourism Municipalities and has caused no problems at national level”.
The five member boroughs represent 6% of the tourist trade nationally, with a combined total of 57 million overnight stays per year, 53% of the Canarian tourism spend and 6.8 million tourists.