(Photo Credit: BVI Platinum News)
The soon to be implemented Border Management System is expected to provide current tourism statistical data that would be beneficial to the BVI in the its efforts to improve the Territory’s tourism sector; and at the same time bring an end to one area of data shortage.
During the contract signing that took place on December 2, Hon. Fahie explained how beneficial these statistics that would be gathered by the system would be for the Territory.
The Premier said, “This will let us know who is coming into the Territory who is here, and even who is leaving, so it would give us the proper statistics we need for our tourism industry; and as we now have embarked on a very ambitious tourism development strategy moving forward this is very crucial for us.”
Getting up to date Customs and Immigration statistics and data has been an issue for the Territory for decades. One person who has heavily bemoaned the situation has been Director of the Central Statistics Office (CSO) Raymond Phillips who explained in a 2017 report that the Central Statistics Office is still facing challenges as it relates to garnering critical data necessary to provide up-to-date statistics.
In that report that was tabled in the House of Assembly the Director of the CSO announced that his Office could not access data such trade information, because it requires gaining access to the Customs Automated Processing System; which was proving problematic.
Similarly, the CSO Director explained that the struggle to gain up-to-date tourism data remained an issue.
During a television appearance back in 2015 Phillips also lamented the lack of data. At that time he said, “We try our best to keep them (statistics) as up to date as we can, but a lot of the statistics are produced on an annual basis; so you won’t get anything for 2013 until we are into 2014.”