The Tourism Ministry and Airbnb signed a Memorandum of Understanding on 21 March establishing mutual cooperation between the Cayman Islands and the accommodation site. However Tourism Minister Hon. Moses Kirkconnell says local hotels and resorts have nothing to fear with this new agreement. Cayman 27 Jevaughnie Ebanks has more.
The Cayman Islands and Airbnb entered into a memorandum of understanding Wednesday (21 March) and the acting Premier and Tourism Minister said it was done with Caymanians in mind.
“It has been the intent of this government to ensure we offer the opportunity to Caymanians to participate as entrepreneurs in the Tourism industry. Airbnb for the past for years has been in co-operation with the hotel licensing board to communicate to Airbnb host their responsibility of holding a Cayman Islands hotel licenses to operate short-term rental property,” said Minister Kirkconnell.
Minister Kirkconnel said Cayman can rest assured the MOU will not cause a decline in hotel accommodation, in fact, he said Airbnb can increase tourists coming here. “The sharing opportunity with Airbnb brings us right back- full circle to what our competitive edge is and that’s the people themselves and sharing the culture with people that are going and come,” he said.
Recent world news highlighted incidents of Airbnb clients being mistreated, but Policy Assistant Carlos Munez said those issues are addressed. “I think that in terms of what Airbnb can do, I think through this type of agreement like what we have done in other areas is strengthen relationship and co-operation with local authorities,” said Mr. Munez.
The Ministry said they have seen an increase Cayman registrations with Airbnb currently there are over 300 residences offering Airbnb accommodation. Airbnb said they will host meetings twice year for persons who would like to be a part of the service.