Tourism Authority negotiated lower figures with both marketing companies

Dear Editor,

In response to the Stabroek News article entitled `Firms hired through restrictive tendering for tourism drive in North America, Germany’ published on September 6th, 2018, the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) would like to correct the inaccurate contracted amounts mentioned in the article.

 In August 2018, the GTA appointed market representation firms in North America, one of Guyana’s core markets and in Germany, one of Guyana’s investment markets.  This appointment followed a competitive tendering process that began in 2017 where companies from the respective markets were invited to bid for the contract of representing Guyana.

 While the figures mentioned in the article were the quotes the winning firms submitted, the GTA negotiated with both companies to secure additional outputs beyond those originally envisaged with a smaller budget. Emerging Destinations in partnership with Green Team Global and Corner Sun representing Guyana in the North American market was contracted at US$150,000, and Fast Forward Marketing representing Guyana in the German market was contracted at US$135,000. Both companies are contracted for a period of one year and can be retained for future years pending key achievements and tangible outcomes within the contracted period. 

The market representation firms will work in collaboration with the GTA and tourism stakeholders in raising the profile of Guyana in their markets. Some of the deliverables from both companies include securing cooperative marketing opportunities, representation at trade shows, reaching key media outlets and influencers and working with international tour operators to sell Destination Guyana as a part of their tour packages. 

Through a direct approach with the representation companies, local stakeholders will gain more insight into what it takes to successfully work with international tour operators. These include:

•             Being licensed by the GTA

•             Knowledge of the destination and ability to educate and inform prospective

               travellers

•             Meeting the required standards of international insurance

•             Being responsive to international operators and their clients within a

               maximum of 24 hours

•             Ability to make direct payments between the domestic and international tour

               operator

•             A good website with high quality images and clearly defined points of 

              differentiation

•             Ownership of movable assets such as boats and 4×4 vehicles is preferred

•             Experience working with international clients is preferred

Yours faithfully,

Nicola Balram

Senior Officer of Marketing

Destination Marketing & Development Division

Editor’s note: The contract amounts were extracted from the minutes available on the website of the National Procurement and Tender Administration Board. This was done after the Guyana Tourism Authority was unable to tell Stabroek News whether or not it could release the totals. Having now done so in this letter bears out the point that had been made at a recent forum for the media and tourist agencies that even straightforward information is not being released to the media on request.

 

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