Tourism may reopen by 1st quarter; Governor confirms she wants to visit Taiwan

Tourists at the Guam airport. GVB has asked Adelup for help in sustaining its PCR testing program for tourists. (PNC file photo)

With the COVID vaccine here and the island’s CAR score maintaining its low level, the island’s tourism industry may soon get a reprieve.

Governor Lou Leon Geuerrero, in a news conference Wednesday afternoon, said the island’s tourism industry may be reopened by the first quarter of next year.

“And that’s so that we are assured that we maintain and we sustain the low numbers to again guarantee that we are containing the virus,” Leon Guerrero said.

She added that she wants to see more vaccinations happen before reopening tourism so that residents can have more protection in case the virus is inadvertently spread by tourists.

According to the governor, the Guam Visitors Bureau and the Guam Airport are already working on plans for the reopening of tourism so that once the decision is made, Guam can hit the ground running.

During the news conference, the governor also confirmed that she is planning to visit Taiwan next month.

Earlier, GVB president Carl Gutierrez said the governor wants to lead a Guam delegation to Taiwan to get more Taiwan tourists and investments for Guam.

“The government of Taiwan has been working very closely with GVB and my administration. They’re very anxious for us to come and it’s very encouraging for economic diversity and also for an increase in tourism to our island. So we’ve been meeting with key officials from Taiwan, they do want us to come, and we will come as soon as it’s safe. And so, the circumstances permitting, yes, I will go to Taiwan,” the governor said.

She added: “I’ll tell you, Taiwan is not a concern for me. I think they’re the only country really that hasn’t had any COVID surges for a country with like a 23 million population, Taiwan has, I think, only about 500-some positive cases, and only seven deaths.”