By Dana Niland
St Kitts and Nevis expects to welcome its one millionth cruise passenger arrival of the year later this month, according to Tourism Minister Lindsay Grant.
This will be the first time in history that the twin-island federation has reached the milestone.
Grant noted that the cruise year extends from September of one year to October of the next, and that thus far cruise tourism has brought over 900,000 visitors to St. Kitts and Nevis over the course of that period.
He said that he expects an additional 200,000 cruise visitors in the coming cruise year, increasing the total to 1.2 million passengers.
“Money is flowing through the country and we have to ensure that we preserve this industry for posterity and for the future generations in the country that is to come,” he said.
Grant also pointed to the importance of further cultivating the stay-over tourism sector of the industry.
While cruise tourism is generating one million passengers per year, land-based tourism accounts for 110,000 of the island’s annual visitors.
“My focus in my tenure–my first five years in the government–would be to focus the attention on land-based tourism and to get that part of the industry as vibrant as the cruise tourism sector is at the moment,” said Grant.