Dozens of mayors sealed their commitment to the initiative of the Get together Boricuaafter participating in a presentation of the project GFR Mean which aims to inject some $75 million into the country’s economy with the visit of 50,000 Puerto Ricans residing in the United States, between May 1 and August 31.
During the event, held on Monday at the Puerto Rico Convention Center, the importance of the effort was highlighted, which It has the support of the public, private and non-profit sectorswho joined forces to achieve the monumental task.
One of the speakers at the activity was the governor Pedro Pierluisi Urrutiawho reviewed the government’s efforts and projections on tourist activity as a spearhead to boost the economy and promote unity with Puerto Ricans who live outside the island.
“Over the past three years, my administration has dedicated itself to promoting tourism, betting on its multiplier impact. We are having historic numbers; “We have records in income from accommodations, both in hotels and in short-term rentals, in visitor arrivals and in other related sectors,” said the president.
“Even more importart, These achievements are impacting more than 5,000 businesses throughout the island and we have more people than ever before working in the tourism sector, with nearly 95,000 jobs in the industry,” he added.
Along these lines, Pierluisi Urrutia pointed out that the initiative of the Junte Boricua “It is focused on the power of Puerto Ricans to impact our tourism and our economy”.
“The campaign (of) Junte Boricua seeks to support tourism in each of the 78 municipalities, in order to continue benefiting the local economy and strengthening the ties of brotherhood with Puerto Ricans who live in the states,” he stated.
“It is a concerted way to invite our Puerto Rican brothers who reside outside the island to visit our tourist offer, and thus benefit our economy, our businesses and our people,” he stressed.
According to data from the Traveler Profile of the destination marketing organization Discover Puerto Rico (DMO), the tourist who arrives on the island stays about 8.2 days and spends about $181 per day.
“Based on these numbers, the Junte Boricua initiative would generate an injection of $75 million to the island’s economy during these four months, with more than 100 activities throughout the archipelago,” highlighted the main executive officer of GFR Media, Pedro Zorrilla.
“The idea is that, of those 8.2 days that you are on the island, you spend at least six days visiting the towns and enjoying the natural beauty, tourist attractions and the events that will take place in each of these. It is inviting them to visit the places where they walked when they lived here.”, he noted.
For the mayor of Camuy and president of the Federation of Mayors, Gabriel Hernandezthe members of that organization, which brings together the executives of the New Progressive Party, “are very happy with this initiative because we are going to be able to inject it into the economic development of our cities.”
“Junte Boricua is an extraordinary initiative where we, people like Camuy, which is a medium-small town in the north of Puerto Rico, have the opportunity to to be able to offer all this number of Puerto Ricans who visit us from May to August everything that Camuy offersboth in gastronomy and our tourist areas,” said Hernandez.
Meanwhile, the mayor of Vega Alta, Maria Vega Paganexpressed that “Junte Boricua is a great project that helps us promote our resources, because Vega Alta needs to be promoted from the four winds, not only in Puerto Rico, but throughout the world.”
“This translates into economic development, employment and gastronomy, because Vega Alta, despite being close to the metropolitan area, 25 minutes away, well, it still has a long way to go to make itself known in several aspects,” he acknowledged.
The mayor of Vega Baja, Marcos Cruz Molina, agreed in support of the project. “The Junte seems like a very important initiative to me, because It gives us, the municipalities, the opportunity to present our gastronomy, places of interest and, above all, tourist attractions. that we have to offer, in addition to boosting the economic development of each of our cities,” he stressed.
For its part, Luis Javier Hernandezmayor of Villalba and president of the Association of Mayors, which brings together popular executives, recalled that Some municipalities have already established communication links with the diaspora, in order to raise the level of participation among their own..
“I think (the Junte Boricua) strengthens those ties and helps us know that Puerto Rico is more than the metropolitan area. Also, there are many other areas, whether in the center, in the west, in the south, in the east, that can be developed, and I believe that all municipalities are going to make the most of that.”, he expressed.
Meanwhile, the mayor of Guanica, Ismael Rodriguez Ramoscommented that “it is a great initiative, to be able to promote, in tourism, the activities of our town.”
“It is to remember the Puerto Ricans who are in the diaspora, so that they have the opportunity to return and remember past stories. We have a large sector that is part of the diaspora that is always with Guanica in its heart, that values what our town festivals are. Resources like Junte Boricua help us alleviate the burden in the fiscal area, because they become a helping hand,” she insisted.
Finally, the mayor of Aibonito, Willie AliceaHe highlighted, among the main attractions of the town, the Flower Festival, but stressed that they have other attributes.
“We have other attractions, such as our climate. And we have the only fresh chicken industry in the country in Puerto Rico and it is in our town. Therefore, activities like this (Junte Boricua) to promote the attractions of our town fill us with great joy and joy,” declared Alicea.