ADPD says tourism strategy should focus on quality rather than quantity

The Green Party says the needs of the residents in touristic localities are completely ignored by the authorities

ADPD - The Green Party held a press conference in Bugibba on Saturday (Photo: ADPD)
ADPD - The Green Party held a press conference in Bugibba on Saturday (Photo: ADPD)

ADPD - The Green Party said that Malta needed to shift its tourism strategy from a one dependent on numbers to a one that valued quality.

During a press conference on Saturday in Bugibba, ADPD Chairperson Carmel Cacopardo said that Malta's economic recovery from the impact of the pandemic should provide the country with an opportunity to shift towards tourism of quality.

Cacopardo said that tourism was injecting income into the economy but was leaving a negative impact on the residents.

He said that it was time to start considering the needs of the residents that live in touristic localities, arguing that the authorities for tourism and planning ignored them completely. "Financial consideration and moneyed interests take precedence over people in most cases almost without fail," Cacopardo said.

“It is enough to have a look at the pavements in touristic zones, taken over by tables and chairs making it impossible to walk through. Residents all over the island rightly demand to have their pavements back," Cacopardo said. 

"The taking over of the pavements by commercial concerns with the blessing of the authorities also means that in such areas it becomes extremely difficult to transport heavy objects into one’s house as well as being unable to put the trash bags out before it is collected.”

Cacopardo suggested that the yearly summer ban on excavation and demolition in touristic zones, should be extended to the whole country.

“It is imperative that this awareness is no longer limited to tourist areas but is extended throughout the whole country because all its citizens deserve to be considered by the building industry,” concluded Cacopardo.

ADPD Deputy Secretary General Sandra Gauci said that recent ministerial statements alluding to economic growth, disregarded the impact on the country’s infrastructure and the quality of life for all.

"Are we aware that services such as our hospitals and schools are already bursting at the seams?" Gauci asked.

Gauci argued that the Government's target to get back tourism to the pre-Covid levels was short sited and focused only on the numbers.

“It seems that no lesson has been learnt and we are going to see a repeat of the same vision of tourism built on numbers and not on quality – it is an indirect admission that Malta can no longer offer quality tourism after the country has been disfigured and made so unappealing thanks to the greed of a clique that have been allowed to do as they please,” Gauci said.

Gauci argued that if Malta believed in improving the tourist product, it would not allow localities like Buġibba to be "mushrooming" with canes everywhere, leaving limited leisure spaces for tourists and residents.

"Noise, dust, abandonment, aesthetically horrible buildings and all day traffic have become the defining characteristics of our localities reflecting an economy based on unrestrained haphazard development on the backs of cheap labour,” concluded Gauci.