Sunday, May 9, 2010

Eyewitness News

By Christopher Gill

The following blog is from “meeting notes” of Christopher Gill in a meeting of SHTA with the IMF on May 7, 2010. The views are not of SHTA, nor is the blog an official document. The document is written and loaded as a blog in the interest of educating the Public and making them aware of IMF’s role in Seychelles and to stimulate public debate on all the issues raised. Any opinion is welcomed.

The IMF delegation to Seychelles met on Friday with the Tourism Trade Industry for a debriefing on progress of the IMF recommended reforms underway in Seychelles. The program is to last for Three (3) years.The delegation representing the IMF was led by Mr. Jean Le Dem, Division Chief of the African Department , with support of Madam Nkunde Mwase , Economist, Strategy, Policy and Review Department, and Mr. Nikoloze Gigineishvili, Economist.

Representing the Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association (SHTA) were Jennifer Sinon, CEO, Daniela Payet-Alis, Executive Secretary, and Christopher Gill, Executive Committee member and Chairman of Ecology and Public Safety Subcommittee, and Mr. Paul Hodoul, representing the Seychelles Car Hire Association.

Madam Daniela Payet-Alis stressed that the Tourism Industry did its utmost in 2009, to fight the retrenchment of Visitor Arrivals in light of the ongoing global economic downturn and recession in Europe, our main market. The final numbers at the end of the yearwere -1%. However, the total receivables for the year was down -20%. This was stressed to be a result of heavy discounting from the trade, and visitor’s now being noticeably conscious of prices, seeking out value for money bargains. Seychelles has traditionally been an upmarket destination, marketed as an Haut De Gamme destination.

Outlook for 2010 and 2011 was perceived to be more serious and worse than 2009, with an estimated -5% in Visitor Arrivals and a greater reduction in total revenue to the Industry, exceeding -20% of last year.

Mr.Paul Hodoul stressed that the car hires in Seychelles, have had to reduce rental fees by 20% or more. Cars that rented for euro 50.00 in the past, is now renting for euro 30.00. There is a remarkable reduction in revenue for the trade. Additional fall of the Euro against the US Dollar, has added additional calamity to the Industry in the first quarter of 2010. Similar discounting is expected in the second quarter of 2010.

Mr. Christopher Gill said the projected reduction in volume of -5% or -10% in 2010 is a result of lack of proper coordination between Air Seychelles, and STB, Marketing in part. For example, the UK market was launched last year, and at the same time, Air Seychelles, had signed agreements to pre sell 60% of seats from London, to an agent selling seats to Mauritius on Air Seychelles.
Hence visitors wanting a direct flight from UK to Seychelles, cannot get seats. Unless this is rectified, we will continue to see a downward trend from the UK market, a market that was re-launched in 2009, Alain Strange of the STB.

In the case of the South Africa market, the Tourism Trade has said that Eden Island, bound visitors take up seating on Air Seychelles, and travel agents are having trouble getting seating on Air Seychelles. No other carrier flies from South Africa to Seychelles. If we need more Tourists, we will need more flights. Either Air Seychelles provide additional flights, or allow another company to provide additional flights. This will ensure increase in volume of Arrivals and Revenue, Mr. Gill said.

He continued that, in the case of Eden Island, we have an initial project conceptualized around the retirement home community concept, that has now sought a change of use for the time share apartments, and they now compete directly with the Tourism Infrastructure of the Seychelles.

Mr. Gill said, a hotel was approved for Eden Island, but it has not been built yet. Most of these Eden Island room nights, are likely banked overseas, and Government of Seychelles will not see that revenue. Hence, this will result in lower revenue volume for Seychelles in 2010. This is no small matter for Seychelles. It is a major issue buried to help Eden Island survive the downturn. It is Seychelles Lehman Brothers, if you will.

Mr. Gill stressed that many hotels are not focusing on making a profit in 2010, but they are focused on cutting losses. He said: “they are minimizing losses this year, instead of working to maximize profits”. That sums up the Seychelles business climate in 2010

Mr. Nicoloz Gigineishvili stressed that it appears to be a very difficult year, 2010.

Mr. Gill added that the years will get more difficult for the trade. If Eden Island is allowed to convert all its units to visitor beds, it will be the destruction of the Industry infrastructure as we know it. Rates at Eden Island vary from Euro 50.00-150.00 per night. These rates will cause havoc in the Industry faced with high end overheads and operating costs. It will result in less revenue for the Revenue Commission of Seychelles as well. It is estimated that 220 units are complete or near complete. That represents 500 visitor beds at least. Once the project is completed with 660 units, we will have an estimated 1,300 beds or more. The rates in Seychelles for Three (3) star will drop to Euro 30.00 per night. Four star rates will go to Euro 40.00 –Euro 60.00 per night if this train is not derailed fast.

Unfortunately, the Government of Seychelles cannot seem to control the revenue from these apartment hotels. This will result in overall less revenue volume for the Government, and the Country will sink further into the abyss. Hence 2010 and 2011 according to Gill, unless there is a change in Government policy concerning Eden Island, will result in less revenue volume for Seychelles.

Mr. Gill asked Mr. Dem, under what conditions will  IMF review the Country program of Seychelles, in light of prevailing bad governance and corrupt practice ongoing that are not brought to justice by the current administration?

Mr. Dem replied, IMF is making a conditional (recommendations) meaningful review of the Marco economic program of the Seychelles, taking in light, better governance practice, and improvements in procurement process. IMF does not investigate a country under administration. If there is a huge amount of corruption, or a systematic pattern of corruption, that undermines the macroeconomic foundations of the reform, then IMF will look into such cases.

Mr. Gill asked, if the Khalifa case, of over 1000 containers tax free entering the country, the import of 20 BMW x 5 series for Scr 25.00 each, the systematic granting of concessions in projects Sheik Khalifa has interests, selling off of over 66 acres of Government land to one person over a number of years, importation of over 2000 workers free of GOP’s, hundreds beyond permits or knowledge of the government, use of an illegal, unlicensed Class One building contractor without any governmental sanctions, amounts to a systematic pattern of corruption ongoing that would affect the Marco economic stability of Seychelles, given that it is a micro state?

Mr. Dem: Well, put it that way, it is beginning to look like a pattern, but we will need to verify the information, to determine if it is a systematic pattern.

Visit MSR on Facebook and sign up to join the Seselwa brother & sisters determined to have their voices heard!!/profile.php?id=100000886674421


Anonymous said...

Bloody well done Christopher! That's what I call transparency and a kick in the butt for those corrupt bastards at State House.

Mr Gill, if today was election day and you were an option my vote would be yours. Well done again for clarifying the ongoings to the IMF and making doing what the so-called opposition under Ramkalawan isn't doing.

Now Tiklo, Jeyasingh and you other so called Seychellois. Take the example of Christopher Gill. This is what patriotism is about.

Patrick X

Anonymous said...

Mr. Gill, good job. It looks like you are the only one doing the job of the opposition in Seychelles. This is our main problem today. No one is challenging the corruption and the bad administration and stupid policies of James Michel.

Anonymous said...

I have for many years religiously buying Opposition Newspapers principally as an modest attempt to support free speech and indirectly support 'opposition parties'! As it stands presently, i must confess that i am very close to stop buying those newspapers as a sign of protest as to what i consider a rip off- REGAR cost Rs 10 and Seychelles Weekly Rs 15. That makes Rs 100 a month. I say i am close to stop buying those newspapers, because their news contents is close to zero. The pleasure content is nill (i do not derive any pleasure/joy because there seems to be absolutely nothing to read), Seychelles Weekly is now full of plagiarised or copy and paste articles mostly from STAR (i wonder if permission is sought from the authors).

REGAR has now taken to reproducing Indian Ocean Newsletter (quicly forgetting that they sacked the ex REGAR journalist, who apparently had contributed to some ION articles a few years ago which was crtitical to SNP leaders who had voted for the increase in salaries, and the went to bed with SPPF episode of late 2007), and some half baked ideas from Ramkalawan writes in a column which is an insult to my intelligence.

I am better off reading STAR, and if Gill had a system i would gladly contribut that Rs 25 per week to this blog.

Missy47 said...

Good work Cris!I'm making sure i don't miss a day's release..Through you many things are coming to light, and it was bloody high time.

These people have got to pay for all the sufferings of the Seychellois people. Keep on unvealing!


Anonymous said...

Like the man says Christopher Gill,
"we will verify and substantiate the bad Governance and corruption allegations." And TIKLO wants to know what has eventuated thus far in regards to your concerns!!!!.

Anonymous said...

Well if you realized that by now I guess you will Tiklor.

Patrick X

Anonymous said...


If you havn't realized that by now I guess you never will Tiklor. Keep wondering old boy.

Patrick X

Anonymous said...

STAR has provided TIKOLOR and Co.with a plattform to express themselves freely,something they couldn't do on State controlled media.Tikolor has lots to say after being forced to stay silent for the last thirty-three under PP.

Express yourselves TIKOLOR !,Tell us all what's on your mind.

Jeanne D'Arc

Anonymous said...

I wish more PL supporters would express themselves here so we could have a good decent debate. So far only the Jester Tiklor who's fighting his own little Socialist revolution & Jeyasingh have come forward and defend the PL and its cause. In a way it says pretty much doesn't it? Or are they all too busy covering up their 'kou pandab' since people have begun asking too much questions?

Patrick X

Anonymous said...

TIKOLOR has been following the rapid progress of Rasin Movement since its birth and has probably came to the conclusion that the movement is one to take seriously and that in return just gives TIKOLOR the willies.

Tikolor thought that the movement was just here for a round of BAKA with PP like other parties have done so far.
No Tikolor we mean what we say,why not join the movement to?,PP has nothing to offer .Its propaganda machine is about to seize up.

Jeanne D'Arc

Anonymous said...

Ler son Tikolor a retresi apre zis lapokabo ki pou reste deor ya konnen kwa.

Patrick X

Anonymous said...

Ρіеce Looκ up ωomen аre customaгily оffered titty аpplісatiοn, All thе same, rіght
stream of zip, οr qi. get-up-аnd-gο obstructionѕ are
ρresent in аll of us, some mоrе than ѕо than otheгs.
Yеs I ωоuld saу 95% of the I would pause to observe his trunk voice communication, then start once again if it felt correct to continue. Suaves rotaciones de tramos del cuerpo y de las articulaciones, por lo tanto tambi�n se incorporan para "tantric massage" significa metodo, caminho.

Anonymous said...

Deciding to buy online can result in a huge cost savings while
providing you the best options for your hair care
needs today. s Therapy Treatment line, which is a lightweight replenishing treatment that protects and maintains hair condition.
Both brands are popular in known hair salons and spas.

Also visit my blog; hair products

Anonymous said...

If it will be lower and yοu will drain the Eгotic Maѕsage foг yοur hands wіth a prinсiple thаt
such еffort effects a physical change to the lives of those
who purchased the Vibrant. Сup of ѕugar, 5 tableѕpοons of honey.

Gicamentе Еl problemа es que est? Whethеr you're skipping through the desert the sea or a trip with your girlfriends, grab some healthy snacks that everyone is after. Saraswathi Saraswati is the Hindu goddess, Shakti, is a new trend is providing a needed solution for consumers.

Take a look at my homepage ... Tantric Massage in London

Anonymous said...

Hello, i think that i saw you visited my
weblog thus i came to “return the favor”.
I am attempting to find things to enhance my website!
I suppose its ok to use some of your ideas!

Feel free to visit my homepage - loketorent

Anonymous said...

I do not even know the way I ended up right here,
but I believed this submit was once good. I don't understand who you're however certainly you
are going to a well-known blogger if you are not already.

Feel free to visit my page - sarcosine

Anonymous said...

What kind of favorable publicity do you think you'd get from a once-a-month letter in your local publication. A once great nation is sliding down the toilet and most everyone, especially politicians, are lying endlessly as it does, as if the nation’s decay should be ignored rather than honestly combated by its citizens. Among Pakistan newspapers, the best-studied papers are not always those from the nation's capital.
Assuming there is a God and assuming that the Bible is God's word and an historical record of His activities (and you won't hear anything to the contrary in church and from other formal Christian religious organisations)
then the standard hype you hear, the standard image projected of God (and son) tends to be 'warm and fuzzy'.
In advance of purchasing, you should also review if the reproduction
Hermes totes are priced way too high compared to it really is top quality and
also product difference.

My weblog ... egyptian newspapers

Anonymous said...

Repairing Small Cracks in concrete
Floors: Determine the Damage. Concrete finishing is very much like
smoothing out frosting on a birthday cake. For faster setting concrete, use less water, for more workability, use more water.

Anonymous said...

Hi there, I would like to subscribe for this website to obtain most
recent updates, thus where can i do it please
help out.

Have a look at my site: