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The Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce Executive Committee met with the Premier, Hon. G. Wayne Panton, MP, JP, and the Hon. Kenneth Bryan, MP, Minister for Tourism and Transport last week (Thursday, September 16, 2021). The Chamber of Commerce requested the meeting to deliver the views of the Chamber membership and highlight concerns around the status of the Government’s five phase Reopening Plan, which was halted on 14 September.

Mr. Michael Gibbs, President of Chamber of Commerce said the meeting was also initiated to offer the Chamber’s resources and to determine whether there were any action points the Chamber could take to enable the Government to reconsider its decision and open sooner.

“It is imperative that the Cayman Islands Government is kept informed of the business impact of the adjustments to the phased Reopening Plan. It is the responsibility of the Chamber of Commerce to not only illustrate this impact by highlighting the views of our membership, but to also offer our assistance in helping to prepare the community.” 

Prior to the meeting, the Chamber’s Executive Committee met with Chamber of Commerce Past Presidents to gather their views around the postponement of the reopening and understand the implications within their respective industry sectors to share with the Premier. 

A broad range of industry sectors are represented by Chamber Past Presidents, including, real estate, development, investment, financial services, legal, retail, small business, health care, insurance, and tourism. The Chamber Executive Committee took the Past Presidents’ specific examples of business impact to government, using their testimonials to illustrate the challenges being faced and the need to work collaboratively on this communications project. 

“I’m happy to announce that the outcome of the meeting between the Chamber of Commerce and Government was a positive one. The meeting was informative and facilitated an open exchange of views and concerns. The Government has agreed to work closely with the Chamber of Commerce to develop a communications strategy to best prepare the community for a safe reopening of the Cayman Islands borders,” Gibbs said. 

Other objectives of the strategy include increasing the community’s vaccination rate, as well as addressing the anxiety associated with living with COVID-19 and community transmission. 

The Chamber and Government have agreed to meet regularly to closely monitor the progress of the implemented strategy. The plan will be rolled out in phases and reactive to further developments initiated by the Government. The goal is to set a firm date for the country’s reopening so the local and international community can feel adequately prepared.