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Caribbean Hotels Advised to Replace Buffet Dinners and Minibars – Travel Agent

Caribbean hotels may have to scrap conveniences, such as buffets and drinks stations, and reduce the sitting capacity of la carte restaurants in order to attract post-COVID-19 guests, suggest two hospitality experts. Instead, they will have to find creative ways to attend to customers, like serving dinner in secluded areas on the beach, say Emile Gourieux and Rico Louw, senior managers at STR, a Tennessee-based firm that tracks supply and demand data for multiple market sectors, including the global hotel industry.

We may never return to travel as normal, as we understood it before. Things like buffet breakfast may never be seen again. So, there's a lot of things that we need to rethink, says Gourieux, STRs hotel sector business development executive in Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. At least at the very beginning of recovery when people are coming back, people are going to be very leery about close contact. So, the hotels that succeed and thrive are going to be the ones that find a way to address that anxiety.

Louw, the senior account manager and client liaison at STR, adds that buffets and minibars may be totally out of the question moving forward.

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Both emphasize the enormity of the challenge ahead for the regions hospitality sector, which recorded occupancy of under 6 percent during the week of April 12 and a fall in revenue of over 80 percent. They say its difficult to predict when arrivals will return to pre-pandemic levels, noting that based on several factors, including airlift, it could be up to three years before parity is achieved.

Gourieux and Louw are guests on the latest episode of a podcast series produced by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), entitled,COVID-19: The Unwanted Visitor, where they addressed what the Caribbean hospitality sector could look like in the aftermath of the coronavirus crisis, which has brought tourism to a virtual standstill. The podcast is available on several platforms, including Anchor and Spotify, as well on the CTOs Facebook page.

To listen, visithttps://anchor.fm/onecaribbean.

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Caribbean Hotels Advised to Replace Buffet Dinners and Minibars - Travel Agent

Latin America and the Caribbean Region COVID-19 Situation Report No. 2 – Argentina – ReliefWeb

Highlights

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to expand in Latin America, following patterns seen in other parts of the world.

Brazil, the largest and most populous country in the region, reports the highest number of confirmed cases and fatalities, followed by Peru, Chile and Ecuador.

Most countries in the region have weak and fragmented health systems, which do not guarantee the universal access needed to address the COVID-19 health crisis.

Generally, health systems are organized through public-sector services for people with low income, social security services for formal workers and private-sector services for those who can afford them. Health systems remain segregated and unequal, resulting in different services of varying quality to different population groups.

Although reform is underway to reduce fragmentation and expand access, health systems are still inadequate.

Over the last several weeks, an increased impact on the health of personnel on the frontlines has been noted, due to their heightened level of exposure and lack of adequate personal protection equipment (PPE).

Additionally, over the last several weeks, governments in the region have taken measures to scale up the capacities of their health systems to respond to COVID-19.

As the epidemic continues to grow and is expected to reach its peak in May and June 2020, preventive social isolation measures and nation-wide lockdowns continue in the vast majority of countries, exacerbating existing inequalities and affecting the most vulnerable population groups. Refugees and migrants from Venezuela in host and transit countries are especially affected.

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Latin America and the Caribbean Region COVID-19 Situation Report No. 2 - Argentina - ReliefWeb

Hold on Tight: Researchers Say Caribbean Lizards Grow Bigger Toes to Survive Hurricanes – The Weather Channel

Lizards in the Caribbean have evolved to hold on for dear life with their toes in order to survive hurricanes, according to new research.

A study from Washington University in St. Louis published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science showed that lizard groups on Caribbean islands that experience more frequent hurricanes develop larger toepads than lizards that experience fewer tropical cyclones.

That trait is a survival mechanism that helps lizards grip vegetation during high winds, and thus avoid being blown away and killed, the researchers said.

"Correcting for things like differences in body size, we found that island populations that had been hit by hurricanes more [frequently] had larger toepads," Colin Donihue, a postdoctoral fellow in biology at Washington University and lead author of the study, said in a news release.

"Hurricanes seem to be having some sort of additive effect on the evolution of these lizards that the more hurricanes you have, the larger toepads you have, on average."

(MORE: May Weather: What to Watch Out For and Look Forward To)

Anolis lizards have specialized toepads that enable them to cling to smooth surfaces. Researchers found that the toepads of surviving lizards after hurricanes are significantly larger than others.

Donihue and his colleagues looked at populations of Anolis sagrei lizards on 12 islands, as well as 188 Anolis species with ranges from Florida to Brazil. They culled through 70 years of NOAA hurricane data as well as hundreds of measurements of lizard toepads.

The idea that lizards might be growing larger toepads first came to Donihue in 2017, when he finished a previous survey of Anolis lizards in Turks & Caicos just before hurricanes Irma and Maria hit the islands two weeks apart. Donihue did a comparison immediately after the storms that showed the lizards who survived had different physical traits than the general lizard population before the hurricanes.

Donihue and his fellow researchers returned to Turks & Caicos a year later to take new measurements for the most recent study. They discovered that a new generation of lizards had also adapted the larger toepads.

The scientists say similar evolutionary responses are likely happening in other animals.

"My best guess is that this isnt just a lizard thing," Donihue said. "For any other species affected by hurricanes where survival is non-random, you would predict this same kind of pattern occurring."

(MORE: 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season Expected to Be More Active Than Usual)

Such adaptations could help species defend themselves against climate change.

"Our best idea right now is that tropical cyclones will become less frequent globally. However, a higher percentage of them will become intense hurricanes," said Alex Kowaleski, a study co-author who specializes in meteorology and atmospheric science at Penn State University. "Increases in sea-surface temperatures will cause a higher percentage of tropical cyclones that do form to become Category 4 or 5 hurricanes."

Donihue added that there are likely other evolutionary factors at play in lizard survival besides big, strong toes.

"Most of the selective pressure is to just be good at being a lizard: to go catch food, find a mate and avoid predators," Donihue said. "These hurricane events are very infrequent and unpredictable, so we expect that there are other selective pressures that are acting on toepads. In other words, over time, these toepads are not going to turn into big snowshoes, or something like that. Theres a balance."

The Weather Companys primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.

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Hold on Tight: Researchers Say Caribbean Lizards Grow Bigger Toes to Survive Hurricanes - The Weather Channel

Pirates Of The Caribbean 6: Release Date, Plot, And Get All The Latest Updates We Have So Far – World Top Trend

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Pirates are going to be back together with their fun-packed experiences. The first film was released in 2003, which received many fans and responses. It was one of those films which received the highest turnover globally.

The final fifth picture was released in 2017, which was the last time. It had a caption that Dead Men Tell No Tales. Everyone is currently waiting for the voyage of experiences to release. Disney scheduled the movie release for 2021.

Its prepared to start from the Year 2021. According to sources that a new writer Terry Rossio and Jeff Nathans is producing the narrative and it will launch in the cinemas in the middle of 2021.

Jack Sparrows role will be performed by Johnny Depp, whos the heart and soul of the film. Orlando Bloom will look like William Turner. Keira Knightly is going to be presented as Elizabeth Swam. Brenton Thwaites will replay the son of Elizabeth Turner and the married couple William Turner. Kevin McNally is going to be viewed as Joshanee Gibbs. It is rumored that a new cast will play a significant part.

The movie was likely to be released in 2020 but has been delayed. Its also expected that Johnny Depp and with his famous character Jack Sparrow due to the allegations with his ex-wife Amber Heard would not be playing. Among the fan, concepts are that a female lead pirate might replace Jack Sparrow. Because there is absolutely no formal structure to the movie, the options are endless and seem concerning what 2020 entails about this film.

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Pirates Of The Caribbean 6: Release Date, Plot, And Get All The Latest Updates We Have So Far - World Top Trend

Puerto Rico earthquake: 5.5 magnitude quake rocks Caribbean – is there a tsunami warning? – Express.co.uk

The 5.5 magnitude is one of several tremors which rocked Puerto Rico today, the most recent of which came in at 4.5.

Tsunami.gov, the American Tsunami monitoring body, said there is currently no tsunami warning for Puerto Rico, according to data from the latest tremors.

They have advised people may have experienced "shaking".

READ MORE:NASA reveals Puerto Rico earthquake damage in satellite images

Puerto Rico isn't the only country to feel the sting of an earthquake today, as Greece was also hit by a significant tremor.

The USGS reported a 6.6 magnitude earthquake near Ierapetra at 12.51pm, which rumbled in the sea to the south of the Cretan town.

Currently, the earthquake monitors suggest people on the island will not feel its effects, and there is a low chance of death or significant economic damage.

The USGS released a green pager warning for both estimates, with a maximum 65 percent chance one person would die, and damages could stray into the $1 million (750,000) band.

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Puerto Rico earthquake: 5.5 magnitude quake rocks Caribbean - is there a tsunami warning? - Express.co.uk

Escape To The Caribbean With These Soulful Recipes – Essence

Right now, many of us are wishing that we could be on an island somewhere, with a fruity drink in our hands and our toes dipped in the sand. Unfortunately however, the reality is that were living amidst a global pandemic and leisure travel will not be on the horizon for quite some time.

The good news: you can escape to the Caribbean through your own kitchen! Here are a few recipes to bring the fare of your favorite tropical hotspot right into your home.

Lionfish Ceviche with Mango and Lime - St. Lucia

Ingredients: 1 pound lionfish (can be substituted for any fresh, mild, white fish); 1 tbsp kosher salt; 1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice; 1 cup white vinegar; 2 medium jalapenos (minced); 1 large sweet red pepper (julienned); 1 large firm mango (finely julienned); 1 medium red onion (shaved); 1 tsp minced garlic; tbsp freshly ground black pepper; tsp crushed red chili flakes; cup extra virgin olive oil; cup freshly picked cilantro leaves. Instructions: Cut lionfish into short, thin, julienned pieces. Place in a stainless steel bowl and season with 2 teaspoons of salt. Pour lemon and lime juice over fish, cover, and refrigerate for half an hour. Drain citrus juices using a colander. Pour the vinegar over the fish while tossing lightly. Using a large bowl, add jalapenos, peppers, mango, onion, garlic, salt, pepper, and chili flakes. Toss lightly and cover with olive oil. Cover and refrigerate to let set for at least half hour. Add cilantro and mix well before serving. (Recipe courtesy of Jade Mountain)

Guava and Cream Cheese Rolls - Cayman Islands

Ingredients: 3 eggs, room temperature; cup (6 oz) buttermilk, room temperature; cup sugar; 2 teaspoon dry yeast; 4 cup (21 oz); All purpose flour; 6 tablespoons butter, melted & cool; 1/3 cup soft butter; 1 cup brown sugar; 8 ounces cream cheese, frozen and cut into cubes; 8 ounces guava paste, cubed; 8 ounces guava shells, chopped, no syrup; 8 tablespoons butter, room temperature; 1 cups powdered sugar; 8 ounces cream cheese; 8 ounces Guava paste cubed; tsp vanilla extract; 1/8 teaspoon salt.Instructions: In a mixer, whisk eggs and buttermilk to mix. Add the sugar, salt and yeast, allow yeast to activate for about 15 minutes. Add 2 cups of flour and the butter, stir with a spatula. Add the other 2 cups of flour and knead with the dough hook on low speed for 5 minutes. The dough should come clean from the sides, add more flour if necessary. Knead for 5 more minutes, then knead by hand for 1 minute. Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover for 2 hours to allow for proofing. Roll the dough to 21x16 and thickness. Spread the butter on the dough leaving border free of the butter. Sprinkle the brown sugar evenly. Distribute the cream cheese cubes, guava paste and chopped guava over the dough. Roll the dough, and pinch at the seams then cut into 1 thick. Place in a buttered pan, cover and allow to proof for 45 minutes. Bake at 400 degree for 20-25 minutes. For the icing, beat all the ingredients except for the guava paste until fluffy. Scrap down the bowl and add the guava paste and beat until incorporated into smaller pieces. (Recipe courtesy of Chef Thomas Tennant of Tomfoodery Kitchen)

Jerk Beef Tenderloin - Jamaica

Ingredients: 6 oz. beef medallions; 2 tbsp Jerk Seasoning; 2 tbsp olive oil; 1 small onion, finely diced; 2 tbsp scallion, chopped; 2 garlic cloves, minced; 1 sprig fresh thyme; 1 tbsp butter; 1 cup beef stock; 1/2 cup dry red wine; 1 tsp cornstarch. Instructions: Place beef into a Ziplock bag with jerk seasoning. Coat beef in seasoning and place in the fridge to marinate overnight or for at least 4 hours. After marinating, warm olive oil in a large skillet on high heat. Once the oil is hot, sear beef on each side for 1 minute or until brown and remove from heat. In a separate pot, add onion, scallion, garlic and thyme and butter and saute for 2 minutes. Add beef stock and and red wine and bring to a boil, add cornstarch to thicken as desired. Pour sauce over beef and enjoy while hot. (Recipe courtesy of Chef Stefan Spath at Couples Resorts in Jamaica)

Pineapple Coconut Chia Pudding - Jamaica

Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups (360ml) of coconut milk; 6 tablespoon chia seeds; 2 tablespoon honey; 2 cups (480ml) diced fresh pineapple; 1 cup (240ml) fresh pineapple juice; 2 teaspoon brown sugar; Juice from 1 lime; Fresh pineapple, mint and coconut flakes for decoration.Instructions: In a bowl, mix coconut milk with honey until honey is completely dissolved. Add chia seed and stir for about two minutes, you can also refrigerate this overnight. Add sugar in a medium sauce pot, or saut pan, over medium heat and dissolve until caramelized. Add diced pineapple, pineapple juice and lime juice. Cook until juice is reduced and set aside to chill. Prepare serving cups by putting a layer of pineapple marmalade on the bottom, then a layer of chia pudding on top. Garnish with fresh pineapple and coconut flakes. (Recipe courtesy of Florian Durre at Palace Resorts)

Coconut Curry Fish on Plantain Wheel - British Virgin Islands

Ingredients: 1 Snapper or fillet of your choice;1 Plantain sliced; 4 ounces Cream cheese; 2 tbsp Curry season to taste; Roasted Red pepper; 8ozs Coconut milk; 1 sprig of Thyme.Instructions: Peel and slice plantain 1/2 inch round diameter and boil for about 5 to 7 mins. Drain and set aside. Rub red bell pepper with a touch of olive oil and on a grill pan Roast half the pepper. Peel the skin of the pepper. Season fish with salt and pepper to taste. Then sear each side for 3-4 mins until cooked or golden brown. Blend roasted pepper, fish, cream cheese, coconut milk and thyme in a food processor. Season with the curry. Add more curry, salt and pepper to your taste. Use a piping bag to decorate the plantain with the fish mix and garnish the top with microgreens. (Recipe courtesy of Chef Brent Lettsome from the British Virgin Islands)

Caribbean Reef Chicken - Dominica

Ingredients: 4 chicken thighs; 1/2 tsp salt;1/4 tsp pepper; 1.7 oz dark brown sugar; 4 tbsp dark rum - divided; 1 tbsp lime juice; 2 tbsp lemon pepper; 1 tbsp ginger;1 tbsp cloves - ground; 1/4 tsp cinnamon; 1/4 tsp garlic powder; 4 tbs mango chutney; Parsley - to serve. Instructions: Sprinkle salt and pepper over chicken. Cover and set aside. In a small bowl, mix together sugar, 2 tablespoons of rum, lime juice, lemon pepper, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, garlic powder into a paste. Cover and set aside. Place the chicken skin side up in a shallow baking pan. Run Caribbean paste evenly over the chicken. Bake in a 200C oven for 45 minutes. Combine the mango chutney with 2 tablespoons of rum. Drizzle the chutney and rum mixture over the chicken and bake about three minutes more or until chutney is warm. Serve the chicken with a sprig of parsley. (Recipe courtesy of Discover Dominica)

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Escape To The Caribbean With These Soulful Recipes - Essence

One Photographer Documents the Lives of Schoolchildren in the Caribbean – AnOther Magazine

April 29, 2020

At the end of 2018, model-turned-photographer Kacey Jeffers returned to his home on the island of Nevis in the Caribbean, after his visa expired. Frustrated by the New York grind, hedecided to take some time to recalibrateand recharge his creative energyby immersing himself in a new project: a series of portraits of schoolchildren,brought togetherin hisnew book, Uniform.

My camera was my tool to build something, Jeffers says. Portraiture is my foundation as a photographer, and I wanted to photograph local kids at school in their uniform so I could merge elements of fashion, portraiture and reportage. Clothes are never the first thing I look at; Im more interested in the person but I wanted to show how what that person is wearing shapes their character. For me, fashion has a purpose.

On Nevis which is the birthplace of Alexander Hamilton, fourth President of America who has recently been resurrected in the Broadway musical, Hamilton education and the promise it brings is highly esteemed. When I started to think about the project, I had to think about what it meant to me and look at my memories, Jeffers says.

Every Sunday, from preschool until fourth grade, Jeffers mother would steam, iron, and starch his uniform three yellow cotton shirts and two khaki pants to perfection. Each morning, she would caution, Go to school and learn, and bring this uniform back home just how you left with it. Jeffers did just that, recognising thatlearning to respect himself in this way was an integral part of his education.

When it came to the time for him to make these portraits, Jeffers sought out students who might not have the same advantages as those at the top of the class or those regarded as traditionally beautiful. Instead, he wanted to photograph the shy and the rambunctious alike, the students who might otherwise slip through the cracks and present them as individuals worthy ofrespect and regard in their own right.

Growing up in Nevis, which onlygained its independence from the UK in 1983, among a population of 12,000 citizens predominantly of African descent, Jeffers had not thought about being seen as other until he moved to New York. With the understanding of what W.E.B. DuBois deemed double consciousness, Jeffers approaches his work from the understanding that race is just one part of the story being told.

When I photograph black people, it has to come from something deep and authentic, he says. I am looking within for intimacy, presence, and a connection to something other than the physical to capture the essence of that person.

As a self-taught photographer, Jeffers works from instinct, knowing exactly the mood for the work then collaborating with his subjects to allow it to unfold naturally. While he made photographs in the islands 14 schools, he wanted to make sure the locations did not overwhelm the shot with narrative information that would frame his subjects as mere children. Jeffers understood, like race, they were more than just their age the whole being greater than the sum its parts.

This is how I want to shoot fashion, Jeffers says. Something merges my culture with the world, where it has a purpose and represents something to people in my community. I see fashion everywhere.

Uniformby Kacey Jeffers is out now.

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One Photographer Documents the Lives of Schoolchildren in the Caribbean - AnOther Magazine

Heres Everything You Know So Far About Pirates Of Caribbean 6 – World Top Trend

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The Pirates of the Caribbean is a film set that consolidates five psychological experiences right up til the current moment.

The series is created through the craftsman Jerry Bruckheimer. The five continuing series has earned more noteworthy compared to 4. five billion. The Pirates of the Caribbean 6 series would be extraordinary for everyone.

Caption Jack Sparrow, who is played by way of Will Turner and Johnny Depp, plays Orlando Bloom is the characters Within the film, and Elizabeth Swann grasps Keira Knightleys conduct. The most effective possible quantity of funding for the franchise movie industry was $4.524 billion in recent decades.

The movie will be released from today. As the resources discovered, Disney is expressed to be toward the start of the 6th season of this Caribbean privateers. The movie series is your screenplay by method for Terry Rossio and founders Jeff Nathanson. The date of appearance will be approximately 2021.

It is assumed that in the moving toward film Johnny Depp, which performed the most leader inside the film, Jack Sparrow, wouldnt play with its individual as he mentioned 90 million bucks of his part, which Disney got not prepared to play with.

Another caution of the manufacturers decided to alter the position turned into his wrongdoing.

Fans and fans are also anxious to capture the 6th movie megastar cast. Regardless, Depp can not be seen inside the film as set up by way of its late-settled on journalists of the series.

There have been bits that were snitch, together with Johnny Depp, which demanded a payout and attained the split. It is realized that the plot spins around Wills terrible vision of exploring the nearness of Davy Jones.

This innovative and enlightening works as Davy Jones is and in no manner, form or shape improvements on, building a vengeance attack. Similarly, the gamers inward pieces are going to be within the game. A lady hooligan is reliable to win Johnny Depp in our temperament.

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Port of New Orleans gains new Evergreen service offering connections to the Caribbean – Container Management

The Evergreen Arkadia called at Napoleon Avenue Container Terminal

Evergreen Shipping has launched a new weekly container service to and from the Caribbean and the Port of New Orleans (NOLA), growing export business for commodities such as resin, poultry, forestry and agricultural products.

The addition of the CAJ service adds to the Taiwanese lines current offerings in and out of New Orleans on the Ocean Alliances Asia and North Europe services.

The new service will be handled by terminal operator Ports America at the Napoleon Avenue Container Terminal. The direct ports of call will be Manzanillo, Colon, Kingston and Port Au Prince with connections to/from Asia, West Coast South America and the Caribbean.

Port NOLA president and CEO Brandy D. Christian said: We are thrilled to welcome Evergreens new service to the Port and for the opportunity to provide our shippers with increased global connectivity through Evergreens extensive network of services in Panama.

The service may also help the port, which saw 13% loaded import container volume growth last year, generate further import growth from overseas markets. It now has a total of 13 direct weekly container services.

Christian added: The addition of the Evergreen service at this time underscores confidence in Port NOLAs and our terminal operators ability to move cargo throughout the COVID-19 global pandemic challenges, keeping the health and safety of our frontline employees top of mind.

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Port of New Orleans gains new Evergreen service offering connections to the Caribbean - Container Management

European Union and Latin America and the Caribbean: joining efforts against the coronavirus – OnCubaNews

A few years ago, the European Union placed the concept of resilience at the center of its Global and Security Strategy. In a more complex, contested and interconnected world, the assumption made was that security and well-being were going to face new geopolitical challenges as well as transnational risks derived from globalization. This required strengthening the capacity of each country to adjust and overcome external shocks. This is an objective of our international cooperation, but it also challenges an EU that knows that it is vulnerable to these risks.

Today, the COVID-19 is a critical test of resilience for societies, economies, and governance around the world. In the face of a global pandemic, there is no room for exclusively national responses or an interested use of cooperation or economic power for geopolitical purposes. To be sure, there are different capacities and responsibilities to start with, but without mutual support or joint global actions, the impact of the disease can be even more devastating for everyone.

The European Union and its citizens are going through very hard times. But we are aware that to overcome the pandemic we must cooperate with all our partners, working side by side. And we know this because we have been doing it for decades throughout the world, facing other shared challenges, and in particular in Latin America and the Caribbean. And that is why, despite our own difficulties, the European Union has decided to immediately reorient the technical and financial cooperation programs with Latin America and the Caribbean to respond to this pandemic, with a total of 918 million Euros, as part of the global response in support of the efforts of partner countries to tackle COVID-19. Thus, 9 million Euros will be allocated to finance the work of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), and the International Federation of the Red Cross in Venezuela and neighboring countries.

In the Caribbean, the EU is funding the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) with 8 million Euros, and in concrete in Jamaica, the EU has financed 29 respirators for intensive care units.

In Cuba, the EU is strategically adapting to the new context the cooperation projects being implemented in the country, especially those related to food security, in dialogue with the government and relevant institutions. Likewise, urgent needs are being identified in the health services and other social services to direct possible additional funds, particularly those that may result from the donors conference on May 4, an initiative organized by the European Commission with the purpose of raising funds on a global scale to contribute to the fight against the pandemic.

Beyond these resources, where our strategic partnership with Latin America and the Caribbean can be most effective in promoting together a robust coordinated and multilateral response. Our regions have known how to respond to the health crisis, applying drastic but necessary measures such as social distancing or confinement. But the health crisis knows no borders, regions or countries. And this is why we thank Cuba for responding immediately to the request for doctors and nurses made by Italy and other countries worldwide, in a clear demonstration of solidarity between our people.

The challenge has only just begun. The coronavirus is causing a global economic crisis, which will increase inequalities and more severely affect the most vulnerable. Europe and Latin America can do much more if we act together, advancing a multilateral agenda in the G20, the UN and the multilateral financial institutions so that there is more fiscal space to avoid health collapse, economic collapse and a serious social crisis.

The coronavirus is an unprecedented challenge to the global economy. An effective response will need to mobilize international collective action. The EU and Latin America and the Caribbeanan association of 60 countriesmust join forces again. It is in times of acute crisis when the ties between friendly countries are tested. And this crisis has once again reminded us that our resilience also depends on international cooperation. We will only come out of this crisis together.

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European Union and Latin America and the Caribbean: joining efforts against the coronavirus - OnCubaNews

A Rockefeller Resort in the Caribbean Is Restored to Its Rustic Glory – Yahoo Lifestyle

Photo credit: KEN HAYDEN PHOTOGRAPHY

From Town & Country

I traveled to Rosewood Little Dix Bay in mid February, soon after its renovation. On March 24, it temporarily suspended operations because of the coronavirus pandemic. The resort team is closely monitoring the situation, in coordination with the government of the British Virgin Islands, and will announce reopening plans when the time is right.

There have never been many hotels in the world that you could say were decades ahead of their time; cutting-edginess is not an imperative in the hospitality business. But as the catamaran that picked me up from Tortola, where commercial flights to the British Virgin Islands land, approached Virgin Gordas Little Dix Bay and its eponymous resort (its quite the mood setter: a half-mile crescent of palm-fringed white sand), I thought of its founder, Laurance Rockefeller.

Keep the environment as undamaged as possible, he directed architect Walther Prokosch after buying up 500 acres of Virgin Gordas coast and hills in 1959. Keep things simple and informal Utilize natural resources andbenefit the local economy.

It wasnt just high-minded principles that moved Rockefeller, it was also his belief that untrammeled nature was the ultimate luxury for harried humans. (He wouldnt even allow the lawns to be fine-mowed.) His well-heeled guests, he felt, would find true repose and rejuvenation not at a conventional resort but in something extraordinary, which he imagined as a sophisticated fishing village with a central, welcoming long house.

And so they dideven Queen Elizabeth, who visited in 1966, two years after Little Dix opened.

Its renovation, which was just completed by its current owners, Rosewood Hotels, after a four-year closure during which the place was nearly wiped out by Hurricane Irma, pays homage to and reinvigorates Rockefellers ideas.

The central open-sided dining pavilionfour soaring conical roofs designed, in Prokoschs words, to evoke something storm-tossed, irregular, tropical[with] the look of tamed wildnesssurvived the decades but for a few roof tiles, which have been replaced.

Story continues

Everyone still congregates there among the Midcentury Moderntinged rustic furnishings, and the new rum bar is excellent, as are the three restaurants, which serve largely farm-to-table food from an abundant kitchen garden (tours welcome).

The guest quarters, built of wood and the original local stone, occupy the same footprints as before and are still irregularly shaped and sited, as if they sprang up organicallyrectangular and hexagonal, tucked into vegetation or on stilts to better capture the sea views.

They come with large private terraces and patios (you can practically live outside, and there is 24/7 room service); each has its own footpath to the never-crowded beach, its own thatch-roofed palapa and chaise longues on the sand, and most have outdoor showers, some big enough to throw a party in, as one guest remarked.

The resort now has six tennis courts, a large fitness center, and a vertiginously situated spa. (Rockefeller might not have approved: He had a horror of all organized resort facilities, even croquet lawns.) But the hot outing remains the classic beach drop: by boat, with a picnic, to one of the nearby deserted strands of sand.

As for air conditioning, Rockefeller hated it. (So do I.) The rooms now have it, but this is the first resort where I have come back from dinner after turndown to find the AC off and the terrace doors open to the trade windsexactly as I left them.

This story appears in the May 2020 issue of Town & Country. Subscribe now

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A Rockefeller Resort in the Caribbean Is Restored to Its Rustic Glory - Yahoo Lifestyle

Pirates of the Caribbean: Every Main Character, Ranked by Sword-Fighting Skills – Screen Rant

Full of adventure, danger, and romance, thePirates of the Caribbeanfranchise has something for everyone. Over five swashbuckling films, fans have followed Captain Jack Sparrow and his companions on quests for mythical artifacts, into battle on the High Seas, and against adversariesas varied as the Royal Navy and the Kraken.

RELATED:Pirates Of The Caribbean: The 10 Greatest Sword Fights

Every member of the colorful cast has tested their mettle by crossing blades with buccaneers, soldiers, and cursed killers. The films boast some of the most elaborate duels ever to appear in cinema, including one of the longest and most elaborate between Jack Sparrow, Will Turner, and James Norrington inPirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest.Here's every main character ranked by their sword-fighting skills.

The son of Elizabeth and William Turner, Henry Turner had both his parents' good looks and their rebellious spirit. Resentful at his father for being cursed to command theFlying Dutchman,when he was of age he set off to free him by finding the Trident of Poseidon inPirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales.

An officer in the Royal Navy, Turner learned his way around firearms and sabers in an effort to track down his parents' old compatriot, Captain Jack Sparrow. Like his father, Henry is a skilled swordsman, if a little wet behind the ears.

Though she appeared as a damsel in distress inPirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl,byPirates of the Caribbean: At World's EndElizabeth Swann had been around pirates long enough to pick up their handiwork with a blade, which she put to great use in the battle between the Pirate Brethren, Davy Jones, and the Royal Navy.

In an unlikely turn of events, Elizabeth Swann was made Pirate King of the Brethren Court in the franchise's third film, and she fought valiantly beside her pirate companions when Davy Jones and the Royal Navy attempted to destroy them.

A pick-pocket and master thief, Angelica was introduced inPirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tidesas both the ex-lover of Captain Jack Sparrow and the daughterof the infamous pirate Blackbeard.

RELATED: Keira Knightley's 10 Best Movies, According to IMDb

Having spent time in some of the most salacious ports in the Caribbean and on the decks of some of the most dreaded pirate vessels on the High Seas, Angelica was the match of any male scalawag she encountered, especially during her fight with Barbossa and the Royal Navy over the Fountain of Youth.

Decorated by the Spanish Royal Navy for his pursuit of pirates across the Spanish Main, Armando Salazar was on the verge of capturing the elusive Captain Jack Sparrow when he ran afoul of the Devil's Triangle and it cursed him and his crew.

A formidable opponent in battle, Salazar was able to destroy any ship that found itself in the Triangle, and even in his cursed state he proved capable of taking on the likes of Hector Barbossa and Captain Jack Sparrow until Barbossa mortally wounded him.

Introduced in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger TidesEdward Teach, or Blackbeard as he was known on the High Seas, was a real pirate that plundered the Caribbean. He was known for placing lit matches in his beard during boarding parties and wearing bracers across his chest with six pistols.

Blackbeard came by his reputation through psychological intimidation, savvy battle tactics, and never letting himself be manipulated (including at his own daughter's hand). Unfortunately, he was no match for Captain Jack Sparrow's blade.

Thought to be the stuff of old legend, Davy Jones was a fearsome pirate who captained theFlying Dutchman,charged with ferrying souls to the netherworld by the woman he loved, the sea goddess Calypso. Her betrayal led him to abandon his duties, and kill innocent sailors out of anger and grief.

RELATED: Pirates of the Caribbean: 5 Best Villains (& The 5 Worst)

Davy Jones couldn't be killed except by being stabbed through the heart, which was not on his person but extracted and kept hidden away in a chest. He was invincible in combat until his heart was located and used against him by Lord Cutler Beckett and the East India Trading Company.

Once first mate under Captain Jack Sparrow, Hector Barbossa mutinied against him and stole theBlack Pearlfor himself,winding up cursed for his trouble by a chest of Aztec gold. Barbossa wasn't bested in combat by Sparrow until the curse was lifted and he could bemortally wounded.

He was resurrected by the sea goddess Calypso in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, and became Sparrow's begrudging ally in the fight against the East India Trading Company and Davy Jones. He survived through all five films in the franchise, until he finally sacrificed himself to save his daughter.

Once a Commodore in the Royal Navy, James Norrington found himself without a ship and a commission after failing to capture Captain Jack Sparrow inPirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest.He became a begrudging member of Sparrow's crew after that, biding his time until he could double cross him and retain his rank.

RELATED: Pirates of the Caribbean: Every Main Character, Ranked By Intelligence

After an intense duel between Sparrow, Will Turner, and himself at the end of the film, he obtained the heart of Davy Jones, which he exchanged for a Letter of Marque signed by Lord Cutler Beckett and an Admiral's rank. Disciplined and skilled with a blade, his only weakness was Elizabeth Swann.

Though introduced as a humble blacksmith inPirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl,Will Turner's inconspicuous trade belied his exceptional skill as a swordsman. He practiced three hours a day with the blades that he made, so that when he encountered a pirate like Captain Jack Sparrow, he could kill it.

Turner would go from being Sparrow's friend to being his adversary, dueling the pirate over the heart of Davy Jones to lift the curse on his father. By the third film however, they wouldtake a stand against Davy Jones and the East India Trading Company, Turner once again putting his exceptional fighting skills to good use.

Captain Jack Sparrow may appear perpetually drunk and overly confident, but he has good reason for both; it causes everyone to underestimate his prowess with a blade. As he demonstrated to Will Turner during their first encounter, he was nigh unbeatable in a duel.

Over the five films in the franchise, Jack Sparrow crossed swords with Will Turner, Hector Barbossa, James Norrington, Blackbeard, Armando Salazar, and many others, always emerging to fight another day.

NEXT: Star Wars: 10 Best Lightsaber Duels, Ranked

NextWhich Brooklyn Nine-Nine Character Are You Based On Your Zodiac Sign?

Kayleena has been raised on Star Wars and Indiana Jones from the crib. A film buff, she has a Western collection of 250+ titles and counting that she's particularly proud of. When she isn't writing for ScreenRant, CBR, or The Gamer, she's working on her fiction novel, lifting weights, going to synthwave concerts, or cosplaying. With degrees in anthropology and archaeology, she plans to continue pretending to be Lara Croft as long as she can.

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Pirates of the Caribbean: Every Main Character, Ranked by Sword-Fighting Skills - Screen Rant

Royal Caribbean: Best of a Challenged Bunch, but Thats not Saying Much – Yahoo Finance

Royal Caribbean (NYSE:RCL) and its cruise operator peers are among the case studies in business model vulnerability to pandemics, a trait making the 57% one-month gain for RCL stock appear misleading.

RCL Stock: Best of a Challenged Bunch, but That's not Saying Much

Source: Laszlo Halasi / Shutterstock.com

Thats a big rally in a short time frame for a stock thats been bludgeoned by the novel coronavirus outbreak. Not only does it lead to some debate regarding whether or not the easy money has already been made here, but it elicits concern about exactly whats backstopping this rally. That foundation revolves around expectations that pre-coronavirus life will rapidly reemerge as the pandemic fades.

Those expectations are being fueled by chatter from some companies that the present will be the worst for the U.S. economy and things will start to perk up in the back half of 2020. As it pertains to Royal Caribbean and any other cruise line for that matter, those arent the companies expecting big rebounds in the second half.

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In fact, it could be the fourth quarter before ships set sail again, meaning Royal Carribeans and its water-borne ilk including Carnival(NYSE:CCL) and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NYSE:NCLH) could go roughly half of this year operating in a near-zero revenue environment.

For those looking to be bullish on a cruise name or those daring enough to wait out the industrys trials and tribulations, Royal Caribbean is the name to do it with, though that doesnt mean it should be atop investors buy lists. That said, it has strong brand equity and that could be meaningful on the industrys path to redemption.

Not only do we believe RCL is the best positioned from a liquidity standpoint, but we also believe as cruising starts to resume, its brand quality and unique itinerary structures (CocoCay, China, etc.) could benefit the company more than its peers, said Stifel analyst Steven Wieczynski in a recent client note.

Speaking of liquidity, Royal Carribean has some seven months worth to be precise, assuming cash burn of $441 million per month and a zero-revenue climate persist. The need to conserve cash, prevalent across the industry, brings up another point: the sustainability of Royal Caribbeans dividend.

Currently yielding 6.49%, the stock is undeniably tempting on that basis, but the payout is also undeniably vulnerable to a cut or suspension. Based on its 192.84 million shares outstanding and annual payout of $3.12 a share, Royal Caribbean would save nearly $602 million if it went a year without paying the dividend. Looked at another way, by scrapping the payout today, the company buys itself roughly another 45 days of life in a no-revenue setting.

Cutting or eliminating a dividend is a tough call for any executive team to make, but if its a matter of extending solvency, its an easy decision and in the case of Royal Caribbean, investors should treat the payout as anything but dependable.

Much of the case for RCL stock revolves around investors personalities. What I mean is if an investor is considering this name for a quick 10%-15% on the back of reopening economies leading to a second-half rebound, then half it. Thats an attainable goal.

However, for those thinking Royal Caribbean can get back to its prior high of $135, there are myriad challenges to that idea, not the least of which is the time it takes for the cruise industry to return to 2019 capacity levels.

As Stifels Wieczynski noted, Royal Caribbean could operate at 75% of 2019s capacity levels in 2021 and 2022 and it could be 2024 before the cruise industry looks like its 2019 self again. Thats a long time to wait, particularly if the company says good-bye to its dividend.

Todd Shriber has been an InvestorPlace contributor since 2014.As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.

The post Royal Caribbean: Best of a Challenged Bunch, but Thats not Saying Much appeared first on InvestorPlace.

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Royal Caribbean: Best of a Challenged Bunch, but Thats not Saying Much - Yahoo Finance

Protecting the Caribbean’s most vulnerable people in the face of COVID-19: A UN Resident Coordinator blog – UN News

The COVID-19 pandemic is one of the most urgent health, economic, and social crises the world has faced in decades. At the beginning of April, more than 870,000 cases and over 43,000 deaths have been reported worldwide. According to the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO), the number of cases in the Americas region is steadily rising.

The Caribbean is also staggering in the wake of COVID-19, which has already dealt a devastating blow to the tourism and service sectors across the region, adversely impacting the mainly small and open economies.

As regional governments move to stem the tide of this pandemic and counter its short- and long-term impact across critical sectors, a multi-sectoral response is needed to meet immediate health emergency care and response needs, while ensuring that a social safety net is created to support people whose income may drastically reduce during this crisis, and to protect the rights of the most vulnerable citizens.

This multi-faceted approach would seek mitigating shocks and support recovery efforts from a crisis that may exacerbate existing inequalities and result in losing past years gains towards the achievement Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Among the most immediate concerns facing Caribbean Governments is the imminent threat to over-burdened healthcare systems and fragile regional economies, which has the capacity to cause widespread unemployment and erode social gains.

As the Caribbean embarks on response and recovery efforts, the principles of leaving no one behind, non-discrimination, and commitment to universal access to essential services would be a useful basis for effective health-related, social and economic stimulus recovery policies.

The UN Resident Coordinator for Barbados and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), Didier Trebucq (right) accompanies UN Secretary General, Antnio Guterres (centre) on a trip to St Lucia., by United Nations/ David Pedroza

A targeted human rights-based approach is always essential if we are to safeguard and protect the interests of the elderly, women and girls, children, people with disabilities, migrants, persons in detention, the homeless and other marginalized and displaced groups, who are the most vulnerable.

The elderly are disproportionately affected by the coronavirus as evidenced by the high number of deaths in this population group. For this reason, it is important that health and social services are targeted to address their needs, especially those isolated without family support system.

In the Caribbean, women are the primary caregivers in many households, and comprise approximately 70 per cent of vital roles in the health and social sectors. Consequently, women not only bear a greater social burden, but face an increased risk of exposure as frontline workers in any crisis. Research also indicates that in humanitarian crises, levels of sexual and/or intimate partner violence, based on gender inequality, grow more acute due to displacement, broken social and protective networks and lack of services.

Containment measures intended to suppress the spread of COVID-19, such as self-isolation and physical distancing, may result in victims being confined with their abuser with little access to support services. Gender-sensitive strategies and interventions in support of potential victims are a necessary tool to prevent the exacerbation of gender inequalities.

Previous humanitarian crises have also shown children to be increasingly vulnerable to mistreatment, violence, and exploitation. It is a priority that precautions and the requisite child protection mechanisms are adapted to protect at-risk children across Barbados and the sub-region during this and any crisis.

With temporary school closures occurring across the region, effective distance learning strategies should take into consideration those children in unequal situations. While online learning may be an option for students with home access to computers and the internet, the UN is supporting ministries of education across the region to identify and to develop alternative, accessible distance learning methods, for example via television and radio, to ensure that all children have access to quality education, even in an extended crisis.

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Protecting the Caribbean's most vulnerable people in the face of COVID-19: A UN Resident Coordinator blog - UN News

How A Little Island In The Caribbean Sea Is Standing Up To The Goliath Of Coronavirus – Forbes

Coastline of Grand Cayman.

It is 9 a.m. on a Saturday morning at Hurleys supermarket in Grand Cayman and there is no hint of business as usual. Members of the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service are manning the supermarket entrance, while security guards spray shoppers hands with antibacterial fluid. Winding dividers direct hundreds of compliant shoppers who file through electric doors every several minutes and at least six feet apart.

Caymanians are restocking on supplies after having just emerged from a hard curfew. No one other than essential workers have been allowed outside of the boundaries of their homesnot even to go on a run or walk a dogand supermarkets, pharmacies and a handful of essential businesses are the only signs of commercial activity.

But Caymans Premier, the Honourable Alden McLaughlin, has a reason to be proud. With just 8 cases of COVID-19 and one death, there have been no confirmed instances of community transmission in the Cayman Islands all positive cases have been connected to travelers.

On a number of fronts, one can say that 2020 has not been smooth sailing for the three-island archipelago. On January 28, an earthquake of 7.7 Mw shook the 102-square-mile island as well as its neighbors, Jamaica and Cuba. Almost one month later, the British territory struggled with what many have considered to be a Brexit-driven blacklisting on EUs list of non-cooperative tax jurisdictions, and in early March, local schools and residents were forced to evacuate when the islands landfill burst into a historic blaze that would take days to bring under control.

To add insult to injury, the government and members of civil society have not been seeing eye to eye on a number of proposed government initiatives, including a $200 million government proposal to develop its cruise berthing facility.

But as coronavirus trickled its way into the Americas, Cayman began what has come to be recognized as one of the most proactive and decisive disease containment strategies in the hemisphere a policy regime that has put its people first at the expense of everything else, including the highly influential cruise industry.

These decisions have not come without backlash. In February, the executive chairman of MSC Meraviglia criticized Cayman for denying entry to the ship, after one of its crew appeared to have symptoms of the virus, stating that local authorities acted out of fear. Carnival cruises opted to change routes, bypassing Cayman because of its stringent anti-COVID-19 measures.

On March 11, when the World Health Organization announced that the COVID-19 outbreak had reached the level of a pandemic and public health experts urged governments to take immediate aggressive action, Cayman had no need to be reactive.

The government had already implemented COVID-19 regulations about a week and a half prior to the announcement, despite not having yet identified a single case of the virus within its borders.

But just one day later, a 68-year-old cruise ship passenger who was being treated for a cardiac condition at a local health facility tested positive for COVID-19, to which he would succumb within 48 hours.

Within days, schools were closed and public gathering bans of 50 or more persons (later whittled down to 10 or more persons) were implemented. All patients and staff of the local health facility, as well as the people with whom they had come into contact with, were quarantined.

By March 16, amid stories of the rampant spread of the virus at sea and three days after President Donald Trump declared a national emergency in the United States, cruise ships were banned from docking in Grand Cayman. By March 22, Cayman bade farewell to its final visitors for at least an initial 21 days as borders came to a close.

For a country that relies on tourism for about 70% of its GDP and 75% of foreign currency earnings, this decision was difficultbut necessary.

The lives of our people in the Cayman Islands are our first and foremost concern, said tourism minister Moses Kirkconnell.

Public orders fluctuated between a soft curfew, or shelter-in-place orders, requiring residents to stay at home except for essential activities, to a hard curfew, or 24-hour lockdown, which prohibited all movement within the community, except for that of essential workers.

We do not know the extent of community transmission, said the Premier in defense of these decisions. We have to act like it is everywhere. We need people to stay home.

Communication was and has been expedient and transparent. Every day and sometimes twice a day, the Premier, the Chief Medical Officer, the Minister of Health, the Governor and an invited official face the community live, via YouTube and Facebook Live, to update the country on the latest developmentswhich have been known to change drastically from one day to the next.

Each of the characters at the table has a unique role. Premier Alden McLaughlin refers to himself as the grim reaper and has been the carrier of news from around the world and the voice of new regulations. Minister of Health Dwayne Seymour has served as the Christian voice on the panel, offering prayers to the country. Chief Medical Officer Dr. John Lee delivers medical news and advice, and Governor Martyn Roper has been the voice of the mother country.

L-R, Minister of Health, the Honourable Dwayne Seymour, Premier, the Honourable Alden McLaughlin, ... [+] Governor, Martyn Roper and Chief Medical Officer, Dr John Lee

Residents are provided with access to free SMS government notices, a dedicated coronavirus government information website and a list of hotlines for questions and reports.

Social support has also been strong and stipends have been provided to those who are struggling the most. Caymans fiscal strength has provided it with the unique flexibility to support the economy for several months, according to the Premier, but as with the rest of the world, no one knows how much support will ultimately be required. And, it is certain that it will take a while to recover.

Also impressive is the strong spirit of collaboration between the public and private sectors. When Caymanian students began to fly in from U.K. boarding schools and universities, three local hotels volunteered their properties to serve as quarantine facilities as per the government order that all travelers self-isolate for two weeks.

The highly competitive financial sector unanimously offered three-month mortgage moratoriums, utility companies put a hold on disconnections, and gas stations lowered the price of fuel.

Cayman is lucky. Given its status as a British territory, the United Kingdom has provided support by way of public health consultations and has contributed supplies. Caymans sophisticated healthcare sector has made it the only British overseas territory that has been able to provide reliable onshore COVID-19 testing.

Early action, transparent communication and strict quarantine rules have been game changers for Cayman, but what has really made a difference has been the clear choice of life over money or politics.

I dont want a single one of my people, and that includes everyone who resides here, to die of this disease. Thats what we are aiming for, said the Premier. It could be you, it could be your mother, your grandmother, your sister, your auntie, your uncle, your father or it could be you No one is trying to make your life more difficult. We are trying to save it. Please help us.

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How A Little Island In The Caribbean Sea Is Standing Up To The Goliath Of Coronavirus - Forbes

Empty Hotels. Idled Tour Buses. The Pandemic Is Devastating Tourism. – The New York Times

MEXICO CITY There were major hurricanes, and the global financial crisis of 2008. There was 9/11, and an array of regional health scares, from SARS to Zika.

But during the decades that hes been involved in the tourism business in the Caribbean island nation of Sint Maarten, Emil Lee has never seen anything remotely like the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

A switch got flipped, said Mr. Lee, whose family manages a hotel on Sint Maarten, which shares a 34-square-mile island with the French territory Saint-Martin. And now theres no tourism.

The global travel and tourism industry is in peril.

Layoffs in the sector are mounting at the stunning rate of one million jobs a day, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council, an industry group based in London, with as many as 75 million jobs at immediate risk. The industry could lose as much as $2.1 trillion in business by the end of the year, the council said.

Borders have been shut, planes idled, cruise ships docked, tour buses parked and hotels, restaurants, bars, theaters and museums shuttered. Tourist sites that only several weeks ago were teeming with visitors are now eerily still.

In the Caribbean, the impact is already being felt particularly deeply. No other region of the world depends so heavily on tourism.

And among the regions countries and territories, Sint Maarten, a mostly autonomous country within the Kingdom of the Netherlands, stands out. Tourism accounts for more than 80 percent of its gross domestic product, according to the latest statistics from the World Tourism Organization, an agency of the United Nations.

At the start of the year, the leaders of the nations tourism industry had plenty of reason to be hopeful about the months ahead.

The country, which has a population of about 41,000, had almost regained its balance after being pummeled by Hurricane Irma in 2017. The storm damaged most of the nations buildings and crippled the airport, before plowing across the Caribbean and wrecking other islands in its path.

But after two years of energetic rebuilding, Sint Maartens tourism sector registered a strong December and January, and officials expected 2020 to be a good year.

Then the pandemic took root and the flow of tourists to the Caribbean and elsewhere dried up.

In mid-March, the government in Sint Maarten started barring visitors from the United States and Europe. A week later, all incoming flights carrying passengers were banned, effectively cutting off the life blood of the local economy.

Hotels on the island now stand empty, save for the odd tourist who decided that remaining in Sint Maarten was preferable to returning home. The once-bustling waterfront is quiet, and the beaches are still.

Restaurants have closed for all but takeout and delivery, nonessential businesses have been ordered shut and there is an overnight curfew.

Weve been crunching numbers here, and were terrified, said Lorraine Talmi, board president of the Sint Maarten Hospitality & Trade Association.

Based on a survey of nearly 600 businesses, she said, the group estimates that some 45 percent of the private sector labor force in Sint Maarten will be laid off within three to six months. And that is a best-case scenario.

Many business owners in the tourism industry have few, if any, cash reserves left after burning through savings to pay for rebuilding efforts after Hurricane Irma, Ms. Talmi said.

Its a real kick in the teeth, she said. We were on the trajectory to get back together, and now thats not going to be possible.

Mr. Lee said his familys 51-unit property, Princess Heights Hotel, which it partly owns, was still open, though mostly dormant. Several state workers from the Netherlands have continued to occupy a handful of units, but the remainder of the hotels rooms are dark.

While most hotels in Sint Maarten have been forced to lay off staff, Princess Heights has not. But its workers hours have been reduced.

This is the first time Ive seen hotels shut down because of lack of business, said Mr. Lee, a former minister of health, labor and social affairs for Sint Maarten. Even after Irma we managed to maintain some level of economic activity.

He thinks the Princess Heights can weather the downturn through the end of the year. If it goes past Christmas, then you need to look at how you restructure, he said.

Most businesses in Sint Maarten, however, may not be so fortunate.

Past four months, Mr. Lee said, I dont know how theyll survive.

Similar hardship is sweeping the rest of the Caribbean, and it is made still worse by the unpredictable nature of the crisis.

With a hurricane, it might damage or destroy a lot of your infrastructure, but its an event, and it ends, and you begin the recovery almost immediately, said Johnson JohnRose, a communications specialist for the Caribbean Tourism Organization, a trade group based in Barbados. This one you dont know when its ending.

Across the region, hotel occupancy has plunged in the past several weeks and is expected to drop nearly to zero by the end of this week, said Frank J. Comito, chief executive and director general of the Miami-based Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association.

Some governments are scrambling to help cushion the impact on the tourism sector.

In Jamaica, Edmund Bartlett, the minister of tourism, said the government was planning to support businesses and employees through cash transfers, special grants, loan payment deferrals and new lines of credit.

We are aware of the challenges and ripple effects of this pandemic as activities grind to a halt and questions surrounding job security arise, he said.

On Mexicos Caribbean coast, where scores of hotels have closed and thousands of workers have been laid off, the state government of Quintana Roo has started delivering basic supplies and food baskets to those who recently lost their jobs, said Rafael Ortega Ramrez, president of the chamber of commerce in the resort city of Cancn.

The government and the chamber of commerce are also trying to help workers secure severance packages from their former employers. And Mexicos federal government is working on its own relief plan, which may provide loans to small businesses in both the formal economy and the informal economy.

Its like we had an open faucet from which a massive water stream used to come and now it has been shut down, and we only have a few drops coming out, Mr. Ortega said.

In Sint Maarten, some leaders in the tourism sector are floating ideas for securing relief for the community.

Mr. Lee said he hoped the World Bank, which is managing a trust fund for the post-hurricane reconstruction on his island, can speed up disbursements. Others are looking to the government of the Netherlands for a fresh bailout.

But for now, residents are preparing for months of duress and uncertainty.

You got to hunker down, you got to be fiscally and financially responsible, you got to cut down your expenses to a bare minimum, said Ricardo Prez, general manager of the Oyster Bay Beach Resort and the Coral Beach Club.

Who knows what the industry is going to look like coming out of this? he said. Is this a fatal blow? Or is this a blow that will take a long time to come out of?

Paulina Villegas contributed reporting.

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Empty Hotels. Idled Tour Buses. The Pandemic Is Devastating Tourism. - The New York Times

How COVID-19 Has Affected the Caribbean and Latin America – NBC 6 South Florida

Countries throughout the Caribbeanand Latin America are ordering residents to remain at home in an effort tocontain the coronavirus. Heres a look at what some governments are doing as ofMarch 28, 2020.

Healthofficials in Brazil say coronavirus cases are now reported in all regions ofthe country. In a recent tweet,Brazils president says the country will now utilize the armed forces 24 hoursa day to fight the virus. It is pouring more resources into battling coronavirusincluding an expansion of tests, more laboratories to diagnose COVID-19, and increasingthe number of ICU beds. 23 members of Brazilians presidential delegation thatcame to Florida two weeks ago later tested positive for coronavirus. Duringthat trip, Brazils president Jair Bolsonaro dined with President Trump atMar-a-Lago.

Cuba is enforcing strict measures in an attempt to stop thevirus from spreading. According to NBCNews reporters in Cuba, the government is banning citizens from leaving thecountry, schools are closed, tourism is shut down, and local transportationservices are no longer running. Large gatherings are banned, and only Cubansabroad and foreign workers living in Cuba can reenter the country.

Haiti continues to deal with food shortagesamid the coronavirus outbreak. In a recent tweet,Haitis president Jovenel Moise says his government is working hard to distributefood to those in need. The country remains under a state of emergency, shutteringschools, churches, and factories. The countrys borders are closed, and a curfewis imposed to prevent the spread of virus. Haiti is one of the 51 countries theUnited Nations will help through a $2billion global humanitarian fund.

Jamaica is urging its citizens to beconcerned and to remain prepared about coronavirus. The government is keepingclose tabs on those who arrived by plane in mid-to-late March and will makesure they are quarantined. On Twitter,Jamaicas Prime Minister Andrew Holness says the country is trying to strike abalance between economic activity and managing the spread of COVID-19.

Mexicos federal government is suspendingall nonessential government activities to try to prevent the spread of the virus. Hospitals, fuel production, electrical power, public sanitation and law enforcement are part of the essential services that won't be suspended. At a recent news conference, Mexicos president said the countrys public health crisis is not resolved only in hospitals, it is resolved in our homes.

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How COVID-19 Has Affected the Caribbean and Latin America - NBC 6 South Florida

CBP Reminds Boaters of Reporting Requirements in the Caribbean to Slow COVID-19 Spread – HSToday

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) issued today a public reminder of the pleasure boat reporting requirements upon return to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

These reporting requirements are essential as CBP and its partners work to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Operators of small pleasure vessels, arriving in the United States from a foreign port or place must, by law, report their arrival to CBP immediately. (19 U.S.C. 1433) After the master of the vessel reports the arrival, CBP Officers provide further guidance regarding the next step in the inspection process.

CBP officers use a combination of traveler history records, officer questioning and observation, and self-declarations to identify arriving individuals who meet the Centers for Disease Control and Preventions (CDC) COVID-19 travel history and screening guidelines. Individuals who are symptomatic or who otherwise meet the CDC guidelines will be referred to the CDC or local health authorities for additional health screening.

In Puerto Rico, boaters that report their entry in compliance with federal guidelines will be provided the contact information of the Department of Natural and Environmental Resources (DRNA, for its Spanish acronym) at (787) 724-5700 or (787) 771-1124.

In Puerto Rico, at the request of the local government, CBP Officers will relay the phone numbers provided by the DRNA after the inspection process is completed, stated Roberto Vaquero, Assistant Director of Field Operations for Border Security in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. CBP continues to work closely with the Governments of Puerto Rico and the USVI to protect the residents of our islands against this public health emergency.

To facilitate reporting, the CBPROAM appis a free mobile application available that provides an option for pleasure boaters to report their U.S. entry to CBP via their personal smart phone or a tablet located at local businesses.

To use the CBP ROAM app, travelers input their biographic, conveyance, and trip details and submit their trip for CBP Officer review. The CBP Officer may initiate a video chat to further interview travelers. After the CBP Officer reviews the trip, travelers will receive a push notification and an email with their admissibility decision and next steps, if applicable.

For any questions or concerns about the CBP ROAM app, please email us atcbproam@cbp.dhs.gov.

If there are problems with ROAM boaters can still call their nearest port of entry.

Failure to report entry can result in civil penalties as defined in Title 19, Unites States Code Section 1436, to include a penalty of $5,000 for the first violation and $10,000 for each subsequent violation with the conveyance subject to seizure and forfeiture. In addition, to being liable for a civil penalty, any master who intentionally commits a violation under subsection (a) of the above stated section, upon conviction is liable for a fine of not more than $2,000 or imprisonment for one year or both.

To report any illicit activity in the Caribbean to CBP please call 1(800)981-1313.

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CBP Reminds Boaters of Reporting Requirements in the Caribbean to Slow COVID-19 Spread - HSToday

Caribbean Moment: A Perfect Sandbar in The Bahamas – Caribbean Journal

Its just called The Sandbar, a stretch of sublime strands of ocean sand remote enough that its never gotten a real name.

Its set just off the coast of Cape Eleuthera, the southwestern-most corner of the enchanting island of Eleuthera in The Bahamas, a sprawling resort made for adventure-seekers and beach lovers.

It takes just a minute or two to shuttle here and before you know it youre in another dimension, of sparkling white sand and the kind of neon turquoise you can really only find in seas of The Bahamas.

Its as close as there is to perfect, a place that instantly turns your day into an all-time great one upon your first step.

Just make sure you take your Kalik with you.

Take a moment and dream of this perfect sandbar in The Bahamas, with the latest edition of Caribbean Moment below.

CJ

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Caribbean Moment: A Perfect Sandbar in The Bahamas - Caribbean Journal

Corona Around the Caribbean – The St. Kitts-Nevis Observer

KINGSTON, Jamaica In the one monthit took the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to completely spread across the Caribbean, several islands have successfully managed to contain the spread of the virus, while other islands are actively struggling.

Dominican Republic Hardest Hit

As of March 28, the region surpassed the thousand-case threshold with close to 1,100 cases of the virus with approximately 40 deaths. The Dominican Republic has been the hardest hit by COVID-19 as 50% of the Caribbeans cases have been reported on the island, roughly the size of Georgia

The Dominican Republic confirmed its first case of COVID-19 on March 1 and the precautionary measures which followed were slowly implemented. Over two weeks after the first confirmed case, tourists were still being allowed to travel to the island.

It wasnt until March 19 that President Danilo Medina announced the closure of the islands sea and air borders, but by then the virus has already began spreading throughout communities. Along with the slow government response, lawlessness of locals has contributed to the spread of the virus. The Dominican Republic has been under a national curfew since March 20, since which, more than 10,000 residents have been detained for ignoring the curfew.

Other islands including Jamaica, Haiti and Puerto Rico have so far successfully managed to keep the number of cases relatively low. Jamaicas Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr. Christopher Tufton has been lauded by several organizations and notable figures including the Director-General of the World Health Organization Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and the US Ambassador to Jamaica, Donald Tapia for the islands response to the virus.

Jamaica, which now has some 30-odd COVID-19 cases including one death, has implemented several measures to contain the spread all while keeping residents informed with daily press conferences, COVID-19 websites, COVID-19 comic books for children, among other measures.

As for regional travel restrictions, nearly all Caribbean islands have closed their borders to incoming passenger travel and encouraged the larger Caribbean diaspora to refrain from attempting to travel to the region until further notice.

The Caribbean Turns To Cuba For Help

While Cuba now has over 100 cases of COVID-19, the Caribbean has turned to the island for answers and assistance. Since the spread of the virus, Cuba health care brigades have been invited to assist medical workers in Jamaica, Grenada, Belize, Antigua and Barbuda, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Dominica. Barbados also recently announced a medical agreement with Cuba which will see the arrival of medical doctors and usage of related drugs.

The specialized health teams which have included doctors, nurses and even therapists all adept in handling critical situations. Outside of the Caribbean, Cubans were also sent to Venezuela, Nicaragua, Suriname, and in Lombardy, Italy, one of the regions hit hardest by the coronavirus.

But while Cuba, which has one of the worlds leading medical industries, springs into action to help the world, the United States has criticized the islands seemingly great efforts.

Cuba offers its international medical missions to those afflicted with #COVID-19 only to make up the money it lost when countries stopped participating in the abusive program, tweeted an account for the US State Department Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, last week. Host countries seeking Cubas help for #COVID- 19 should scrutinize agreements and end labor abuses, the message said.

President Mose urges Haitians to stay home

PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti (CMC) President Jovenel Mose has urged Haitians to remain indoors as the French-speaking Caribbean Community country recorded eight new cases of COVID-19 during a seven-day period.

Health authorities said that the number of positive cases as of March 31, is 16 and have called on Haitians to follow the guidelines being given in a bid to stop the virus from spreading.

In a radio and television broadcast, President Moise also urged the population to follow the principles of good hygiene.

Trinidad not following Caribbean countries and declaring SOE

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC) Trinidad and Tobago recorded its fifth death, the second within a 24-hour period, from COVID-19 but stopped short of announcing plans for a state of emergency (SOE) or a curfew to help curb the spread of the virus that has killed more than 43,000 people worldwide.

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, speaking at the daily news conference put on by the Ministry of Health, said Trinidad and Tobago is also considering releasing prisoners in a bid to curb the spread of the virus but had no intention of following the methods being adopted by some Caribbean islands to implement the curfew and SOE.

He told reporters that if the situation is deemed to be that we need to be more interventionist, and that intervention will put us in a better situation, then the Government has no difficulty in doing it.

Guyana extends the closure of two international airports

GEORGETOWN, Guyana (CMC) The Guyana Government says the Cheddi Jagan International Airport and the Eugene Correia International Airport, which were closed last month as part of the efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19, will remain closed to international flights until May 1.

The Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), in a letter to Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson, noted that the original two-week period was very effective and assisted tremendously with slowing the spread of COVID-19 by limiting international contacts.

It said that the number of COVID-19 cases, both globally and regionally, have risen particularly in countries that have ports of origin for passengers to Guyana.

On March 19, the airports were officially closed to international flights, while domestic flights have proceeded.

Outgoing cargo flights, medivacs and technical stops for aircraft that require fuel have also received approvals by the GCAA.

As of March 31, Guyana has recorded 12 cases of COVID-19 with two deaths.

See the article here:

Corona Around the Caribbean - The St. Kitts-Nevis Observer


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