The partnership between Air Mauritius and Pierrefonds is very important because new market opportunities for development are being created. It is the beginning of a new era of cooperation that promises. We must seize every opportunity and we must integrate all the operators in this process.
This statement was made, yesterday, by the Minister of Tourism, Mr Anil Gayan, at the opening of the office of Pierrefonds airport in Mauritius, held at NG Tower, Wall Street, Ebène. He recalled that the number of passengers travelling on Air Mauritius from Pierrefonds has increased from 57 850 to 67 037 for 2018 and has reached 48 851 for the first eight months of 2019. Continuous growth is encouraging and confirms that Pierrefonds will further develop in the future, he rejoiced.
Speaking about the common destiny of Mauritius and Reunion Island, Minister Gayan stated that both countries are part of the Indian oceania while recalling that the objective is to promote the region as the most desirable for travelers. He lauded the initiative of having a new antenna and an office of Pierrefonds in Mauritius.
Acknowledging the determination of the Pierrefonds economic operators to exploit the significant potential of the South both for tourism as well as for agricultural products and tropical fruits, Mr Gayan underscored that air services using the Hub of Plaisance will contribute significantly to this development. The big carriers, he added, will be able to transport freight from Pierrefonds and this freight will be distributed on all the destinations, especially those of Asia, serviced by Air Mauritius.
Furthermore, the Tourism Minister said that Mauritius relies on tourism as an engine for inclusive and sustainable development as well as for job creation at different levels. He, however, cautioned against the vulnerability of the sector, as witnessed by the liquidation of Thomas Cook, the oldest tour operator in the world. He recalled that the sector is also vulnerable in the face of cyclones, tsunamis and other extreme climatic conditions, adding that these challenges directly impact on air connectivity.
Minister Gayan also said that he is in favour of a tourism industry that is diverse and that new markets should be tapped. He underlined that the aim of Government is to promote our complementary islands as the only most desired and desirable destinations in the Indian Ocean.