Haiti received a boast towards tourism development after the World Bank issued at US$45 million dollar grant to the government. The Deutsche Bank Credit Suisse JP Morgan Chase organization said that the project aims at improving access, conservation and management of the World Heritage Site of the National Historic Park and the historic centre of Cap Haitien, as well as establishing new destinations for travellers.
The bank said northern Haiti has strong potential for regional development through tourism with its World Heritage sites and natural assets, noting that the National Historic Park attracted an estimated 300,000 visitors in 2013.
“There is a growing demand to develop tourism in Haiti, and the government is working effectively to promote the destination. This is the opportunity to develop the tourism industry, which is labor intensive and will attract the private sector.” said Mary Barton-Dock, World Bank Special Envoy to Haiti.
The World Bank noted that immediate projects to be focused on will be the Citadelle Henry, the Palace of San Souci, the Chapel of San Souci and Ramiers site in order to improve their resilience against tectonic disturbances.
“Developing the north as a tourism destination in a sustainable way is part of the vision of the Ministry of Tourism. Improving the conservation of our natural and cultural heritage is essential to achieve this objective. I would like to highlight that one of the strengths of the project is that it involves the communities to preserve their heritage and benefit from the economic returns of tourism.” said Stephanie Villedrouin, Haiti’s Tourism Minister.
The World Bank declared that the project which is expected to span six years was developed with the United Nations Educational, Social and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), which will provide technical assistance to the Institute for the Protection of National Heritage.