Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo said a "collective effort" is needed to ensure the tourism sector's post-COVID recovery, insisting the authorities alone cannot solve the issue. 

Bartolo, who was reappointed Tourism Minister following the March election, made the remarks during the Michelin Guide Star award ceremony held on Wednesday morning. 

Describing the sector as the "lungs" of Malta's economy, Bartolo said tourists should be given a good experience "from the minute they land to the minute they leave".

"Everyone needs to make an effort," he said. "Success in tourism does not depend solely on the minister or the entities but on everyone.

"The pandemic changed the game and tourists are now more aware of what they need," Bartolo said. 

The minister's comments come amid projections for the summer months which have shown that Malta is lagging behind competing Mediterranean tourist destinations in the number of airline seats it can offer visitors during the summer, casting doubts on the island's ability to stage a full recovery in this vital economic sector.

Looking ahead, Bartolo urged stakeholders to ensure quality in everything they do, saying that this goes "beyond luxury". 

"We need to ensure quality in all that we do," Bartolo said. 

31 restaurants on Malta's Michelin Guide

Meanwhile, the Minister awarded certificates to 31 restaurants that made it onto Malta's 2022 Michelin Guide, saying this was a prestigious stamp of quality. 

Five restaurants were also awarded their Michelin Star, which they retained from the previous year. The restaurants are Under Grain in Valletta, Noni in Valletta, ION – The Harbour in Valletta, De Mondion in Mdina; and Bahia in Balzan.


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