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Bahamas: Domestic tourism still a “conundrum”, says minister

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Minister of Tourism Dionisio D’Aguilar said the government continues to juggle the “conundrum” of domestic tourism, given the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic.

In a recent interview with Eyewitness News, D’Aguilar explained that while the government wants to deter people from traveling overseas, it remains mindful about the possibility of the virus spreading from the country’s population centers — New Providence and Grand Bahama — into the Family Islands.

“We are trying to straddle a policy of yes you can go there, but as much as possible we would like to discourage that type of travel because [of] what is happening with all of these variant strains…still working its way through the world,” he said.

“…The government is managing this problem as best as it can.

“Tourism always wants to put its foot on the gas to attract as many people into the country to promote our domestic tourism [but] our health professionals have their foot hard on the breaks, saying: ‘Steady on; let’s take it one step at a time. Let’s act responsibly. Let’s make sure we don’t open the floodgates and let people come in willy-nilly internationally or allow people from the population centers into our other islands and create problems, there which is much more difficult to deal with in Family Islands than here in Nassau where health facilities are a little bit more robust.’”

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