Nigeria loses a sum of N250 billion annually to medical tourism, the Nigeria Medical Association(NMA) has said.

To put an end to such capital flight, the NMA recommended the upgrading of the country’s tertiary institutions and replacing their obsolete equipment with modern ones.

In a communiqué at the end of its national executive council (NEC) meeting in Ilorin, Kwara state ,the association said it was opposed to giving girls out in marriage before the age of 18.

The communiqué was jointly signed by NMA President and Secretary General, Dr Kayode Obembe and Dr Adewunmi Alayaki.

Reading the communiqué, Dr Obembe urged President Muhammadu Buhari to appoint a medical doctor as the minister of health, adding that “doctors who take care of the sick must be accorded priority in the scheme of things.”

“We know that President Mohammadu Buhari has respect for human lives, hence doctors who take care of the sick must be accorded priority in the scheme of things. We hereby implore the President to appoint a Medical Doctor as the Minister of Health. We also implore him to bring out the white paper on Yayale Ahmed Report because this will promote industrial harmony in the health sector.

“NMA is very concerned with the incessant strikes that have bedeviled the health sector which is due to the fact that circulars issued by the government were not cash backed. In the interim, supplementary allocation should be made to pay for such commitments while on a long term basis, it must be clearly defined as a budget heading in 2016 appropriation.

“NMA is in full support of the Universal health coverage, this has been the focus of the national officers’ committee (NOC) of the Association and we believe the instrument of the full implementation is through National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS). We are delighted that the National Health Act made provision for getting one percent consolidated revenue fund through the NHIS while the other 50 percent goes to the primary health care.

“NMA is poised to eradicate measles from our country. We have kicked out polio and Ebola. Everybody should join hands with NMA to achieve this. Therefore, our Physicians Week in October shall focus on measles.”

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Kenya Airways has put things in motion last week to sell off four Boeing B777-200s, which were acquired from the manufacturer new between 2004 and 2007.

Parked outside the airline’s Embakasi headquarters for the past several months, these aircraft have been replaced on long haul routes by the newer and more fuel-efficient Boeing B787 Dreamliner and the larger B777-300ER. Kenya Airways presently has seven Dreamliners in service with two more due for delivery and three of the larger Boeing B777-300ER, that have a greater passenger and cargo capacity compared to the 777-200s and also a longer range. It is understood that Kenya Airways has contracted Cabot Aviation in the UK to sell the planes on their behalf, though it is not clear if the three B777-300ER will also be sold off when the remaining Boeing B787 Dreamliners have been delivered to Nairobi, or if they will remain on the fleet, now that traffic to Kenya is picking up again.

B777s presently sell new at prices ranging between around $260 million to around $290 million, depending on the model type, but aircraft which have been in use for over a decade, while still relatively new, will of course attract much lower offers from buyers.

The effect of the wobbly Chinese economy and the potential fallout for the rest of the world is an added factor why the market for used aircraft at present is judged to be soft, coupled with the vastly improved operating cost of new state-of-the-art aircraft like the B787 or the A350 XWB. This may explain Kenya Airways opting to use a go-between for the aircraft sale and Cabot in recent months has successfully completed similar transactions for a number of other airlines.

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Access to Lake Albert, in particular the Lake Albert Safari Lodge which is located in the Kabwoya Game Reserve, is already possible from Kampala in the space of a few hours on excellent tarmac roads, completed earlier this year, supporting the flow of visitors to the area.

A financing deal worth at least 145 million US Dollars was signed between Uganda and the World Bank during the week, aimed to improve the road network in and around the Albertine Graben.

The same is hoped for other Albertine tourism attractions along the axis from Murchisons Falls via Masindi to Hoima and on to Fort Portal, the latter municipality strategically located as a tourism hub. From Fort Portal, which is also the seat of the Tooro Kingdom, can visitors with ease get to the Semliki National Park, the Semliki Tooro Game Reserve, drive into the foothills of the Rwenzori Mountains and of course to Kibaale National Park, all part of the Western Uganda safari circuit.

While the Ugandan government sees the new road network, due to be completed over the space of five years, mainly as providing access to the oil rich parts of the country and to key agricultural growth centres have tourism stakeholders immediately seen their own opportunity to take advantage of better roads, as several gravel tracks are due to be upgraded to bitumen standards under the project.

Tourism, inspite of the relatively poor facilitation by government over many years and subject to often excessive tax burdens, has become one of Uganda’s leading foreign exchange earners and continues to be a growth industry regardless of intermediate setbacks.

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Five people representing the recently-formed LGBT HAWAI`I organization which is working to promote Hawaii’s LGBT-owned and supportive businesses were the guests of the Hawai`i Tourism Authority (HTA) during their annual two-day (August 27-28) Hawai`i Tourism Marketing Conference at Hawaii’s spectacular State Convention Center. A quick report from the five indicated that LGBT Hawai`i received “overwhelming support” for their suggested international LGBT marketing & outreach initiative.

Foster noted, “We were particularly pleased to hear 25-year travel industry veteran Richard Cutting-Miller, the Executive VP of Canadian-based Resonance Consultancy echo our sentiments in his presentation, The next Generation of Travelers.” LGBT Hawai`i is encouraging HTA to fund a research study to help all of Hawaii’s many tourist industry related businesses to better understand and market to the lucrative international LGBT Market.

Juergen T Steinmetz, media partner and co-sponsor for LGBT Hawaii said: “The first step to any new marketing communications initiative is to learn as much about the targeted market as possible. Tourism market research helps to understand the demographics of visitors and prospective visitors, helps with strategies, creative, messaging, imagery, offers, etc. and guides the development of an effective marketing plan. This is a proven approach and should be no different with the LGBT market for Hawaii.

Numerous states and cities have invested into understanding the LGBT travel market, and have leveraged resulting insights into ROI-driven marketing and advertising plans. These destinations include Fort Lauderdale, the state of Florida, New York City, the state of New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland Oregon, Chicago, Dallas and many others. Hawaii has yet to make this commitment.”

The LGBT Hawai`i plan is dedicated to helping to make this research happen, so that all the hotels, attractions and other tourism infrastructure can benefit from the direction and findings of such a study. The investment is comparatively minimal, while the potential return is huge.

On August 19, 2015, LGBT HAWAI`I enjoyed a very successful formation meeting of 42 LGBT owned or supportive state businesses as guests of the Hilton Waikiki Beach Hotel. The core group has since grown to 119 businesses representing virtually every segment of the tourism industry in Hawaii.

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A 250 square metre large stand will no doubt attract large numbers of trade visitors and while still most tourists come from mainland France have other source markets made gains, giving Reunion a more diverse client base.

This year will the island revel in the spotlight after the Piton de la Fournaise, Reunion’s active volcano, has already erupted four times in spectacular lava flows. The island was also in the news for weeks at end when debris from missing flight MH370 was washed ashore at the Eastern beaches of the island. Whale and dolphin watching, a popular activity will as much be promoted as will hikes and biking trips into the UNESCO World Heritage Site spread across the rugged interior of the island. Adventure activities also include abseiling, canyoning, white water rafting and paragliding, among many other options for an active vacation.

Over 90 participants from Reunion’s tourism private sector and IRT, Ile de la Reunion Tourisme, are expected to head to Paris in a month to attend France’s largest tourism trade show, Top Resa. Reunion will exhibit alongside fellow Indian Ocean Vanilla Island members which are also expected to make a strong showing in Paris.

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Kenya Airways, IATA, the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), and conservation NGO Freeland have joined forces to prevent the illegal shipment of blood ivory and other illicit wildlife products from being loaded on one of their flights, either as cargo or concealed in passenger baggage.

In Nairobi, it is in particular transit traffic from other African countries which in the past has been identified as a major source of ivory smuggling, but the deployment of sniffer dogs; the use of more sophisticated scanners; and cooperation between KWS, customs, and other security officials has led to multiple arrests over the past years.

Mr. Ngunze, yesterday told journalists that: “In the last few years, poachers have threatened to finish our elephants and rhinos, but as a national carrier, we have rolled out initiatives to advance the anti-poaching agenda. We have taken proactive steps to ensure we are compliant with both local and global standards for ferrying legal wildlife.”

Kenya Airways will extend special training to selected staff to increase surveillance and monitoring capacity, among them, serving as a further barrier against smuggling.

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Following Hurricane Katrina, the cruise line resumed service in New Orleans in October 2006 – just 14 months after the storm – with one year-round ship, Carnival Fantasy, carrying less than 16,000 passengers that year. The company gradually increased its capacity from the Big Easy deploying newer and larger ships and next year expects to carry a record 450,000 passengers from New Orleans.

Carnival Cruise Line – New Orleans’ number one cruise operator – continues to expand its presence at the port and expects to carry a record 400,000 passengers from the Crescent City this year. Additionally, the cruise line estimates that next year it will welcome its three millionth passenger at the Port of New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005.

Carnival pioneered year-round cruising from New Orleans in 1994 and over the past two-plus decades has become the port’s largest cruise operator with two ships offering more than 125 four- to seven-day departures on an annual basis.

Currently, Carnival’s two New Orleans-based ships include the 3,646-passenger Carnival Dream, offering seven-day Caribbean cruises, and the 2,052-passenger Carnival Elation sailing four- and five-day cruises to Mexico. Carnival will increase capacity on short cruises from New Orleans by 34 percent when the 2,758-passenger Carnival Triumph replaces Carnival Elation next spring.

Carnival and other cruise operators have a significant impact on the Louisiana economy, accounting for more than 8,000 jobs and in excess of $400 million in direct purchases each year, according to a study commissioned by the Cruise Lines International Association.

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Jazz Aviation LP, a subsidiary of Chorus Aviation Inc, announced today that a new tentative agreement has been reached with its approximately 820 flight attendants represented by the Canadian Flight Attendant Union (“CFAU”).

The new labour agreement is subject to ratification. Additional information will be available following ratification.

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The Guam Visitors Bureau Research Department confirmed that more than 114,956 visitors enjoyed its beautiful island in July 2015. This last month ranked second in the history of tourism for Korea arrivals, totaling 35,395 visitors. The top month for Korea arrivals still belongs to January 2015, with an arrivals count of 38,845. More direct flights through Air Busan, as well as T’Way Air’s upcoming service to Guam in October, will help boost arrivals in Guam’s second largest market.

Although Japan arrivals displayed a slight decline, Korea arrivals showed an increase of 34%. The People’s Republic of China also grew by 26.4%. Meanwhile, growth and diversification is also present in other visitor markets. Palau rose 20.3% and Thailand increased by 392.9%. Additional markets that also grew include Canada by 23.4%, Hawaii by 9.9% and the U.S. mainland by 5.2%.

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GVB, in partnership with the Guam International Airport Authority (GIAA), welcomed over 160 passengers aboard the inaugural Air Busan flight between Busan and Guam on the morning of July 23, 2015. The new flight service runs four times a week (Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday) and will operate an A320-232 aircraft with a seating capacity of 162.

GVB provided a greeting service at the airport for Air Busan President Tae Keun Han, the flight crew, passengers and other airline officials. The welcome delegation consisted of Denight, Deputy General Manager Telo Taitague, GIAA Executive Manager Chuck Ada, GIAA Deputy Executive Manager Pedro Roy Martinez, GVB Board Director Hong Soon Im, GVB Marketing Manager Pilar Laguaña, GVB Marketing Officer II Gina Kono, GVB Marketing Officer I Colleen Cabedo, Miss World Guam 2014 Chanel Victoria Cruz Jarrett and other greeters.

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