MTA identifies the importance of support to develop Sports Tourism
A lively debate was organized at the University of Malta, on Thursday, the 15th of March 2012, by TSA and GUG. The debate was moderated by the Director of the Institute for Tourism, Travel and Culture at the University of Malta Dr.Nadia Theuma. The panel of guest speakers consisted of the Hon. Mr. Chris Agius, Mr. Gino Schiavone, Mr. Xavier Hancock and Mr. Gerald Grech.
Members of the audience included students, lecturers and representatives from the MTA, the latter of which commented on how vast the Sports Tourism segment in Malta is – cycling, walking, water sports, rock-climbing as well as sports training camps. However, she added, that since the remit is wide, the MTA needs others like the Parliamentary Secretary for Sports as well as Local Associations who could be their ‘extended arm’. She said in fact some of these local associations already approach the MTA for financial and other support whilst organizing international events. Bed-nights in this niche have already doubled from 40,000 to 80,000 in the recent past, and this excludes those booked for Mega-events like the Power Boats Grand Prix, Drifting Grand Prix and the Marathon and the Rolex event.
A question and answer session followed the debate whereby it was evident that most people from the panel and from the audience felt Malta has what it takes to become a successful Sports Tourism destination. It was also agreed however, that both dialogue and perseverance are needed if we are to achieve this goal.
Written By: Roshan Mohnani