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May/ 2004
- Press Releases

ITALIAN GOVERNMENT REITERATES ITS SUPPORT FOR THE COUNTRY'S FIRST COMPREHENSIVE TOURISM COMPLEX AT TELA BAY

Following the visit in May by President Ricardo Maduro and Tourism Minister Thierry de Pierrefeu to Italy , the Italian government has reconfirmed its commitment to funding social infrastructure projects at the country's first comprehensively-planned tourism complex ( Centro Integralmente Planeado , or CIP) at Tela Bay . The visit was made to discuss this and other financial matters regarding Italy 's cooperation efforts in Honduras .

Italy 's funding for CIP/Tela Bay will start with €500,000 to finance a feasibility study to identify priority projects, such as water and sewage systems, land ownership records, urbanization, hospitals and employee training in the hotel and services sectors. The final cost of these projects is expected to reach €40 million.

The Italian government has put together a team of experts who are already in Honduras carrying out the study. The funding is expected to be approved by the Italian Senate in October of this year. The first outlay will take place during the first trimester of 2005.

The CIP/Tela Bay project has been designed in an effort to guarantee the development and diversification of tourism in region. Its initial stages have been completed and the next step will be to select a firm to carry out a series of feasibility studies and lay the final designs for a cruise ship dock in Tela.

Regarding the commercial component of the Project - Los Micos Beach and Resort - Pierrefeu says the study phase, which was financed by the Government of Taiwan, will be completed soon. These studies have covered areas like environmental impact, socio-economic impact, marketing, financial feasibility and urban planning.

Meanwhile, the Honduran Institute of Tourism, though its Sustainable Coastal Development Program, financed by the World Bank, is carrying out a wide-reaching training and development program to support small businesses and community initiatives involving tourism in the Tela region.

Social infrastructure projects and construction on Los Micos Beach & Resort are expected to begin during the first months of 2005.




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