In his Independence Day message to Belize, Prime Minister Dean Barrow made mention of government’s plans for improving infrastructure that will be designed to boost tourism in the country. One major project will be the construction of an international airport for the island of Ambergris Caye.
The Prime Minister’s plan to move forward is with infrastructure being planned around the tourism industry that is one of the largest revenue earners for Belize.
“Tourism remains our single largest driver, I’ll talk a little about our plans to continue encouraging its star turn,” stated PM Barrow. “These include additional marketing and quality improvement efforts but they also include destination infrastructure improvement and there are three projects in that connection that I wish to highlight. First, there is the continuation of the North Ambergris Caye Road Project; we have just signed a contract for the construction of another 4 miles of the road providing land access to the premier resorts on North Ambergris, making for a total of 11 miles that we have already funded.”
Hon. Barrow went on to explain that the last few miles of the road will lead to the Basil Jones Airstrip which will re-develop, re-design and expand into an international airport.
“I am also happy to announce that Basil Jones will be renamed the Efrain Guerrero International Airport in honor of the eponymous, recently deceased San Pedro patriot,” stated Hon. Dean Barrow. “With this, we expect a phenomenal new opening up, a veritable tourism explosion, in Ambergris Caye, which is of course already our market leader.”
With this new announcement, comes great anticipation of a boost in tourism for Ambergris Caye and the entire country, as the international airport opens new opportunities and further development of North Ambergris Caye.
The second project that will see infrastructure improvement is the new road to Lamanai via Bermudan Landing and Lemonal that the archeological site will form part of the day trip circuit for cruise passengers and provide increased tourism opportunities to Orange Walk and to the Belize Rural North villages along the route.
Thirdly, a big project will constitute the paving of the highway to the Caracol Maya Archeological site, with two points of origin from Georgeville and Santa Elena. Funding is being made locally and government has already signed the contract for road rehabilitation from Cristo Rey to San Antonio and thereafter to the junction with the Georgeville Road. Then the OPEC and Kuwaiti Funds will partner together to take us the 40 plus miles from the junction to Mountain Pine Ridge and then to Caracol. In addition to the huge tourism boost, the highway also carries tremendous implications for a quantum improvement in security protection arrangements for the Caracol area.