Ready in 2020 Saint Lucia International Airport Development Plan December 21, 2018 Tourism Authority (SLTA) is excited about this development as it will provide an added incentive for airlines to open up new routes to the destination. Saint Lucia’s Tourism Minister, Honourable Dominic Fedee noted, “We have exhausted the current capacity of the Hewanorra International Airport, and the redevelopment project is part of our government’s broader plan to expand the island’s room stock by 50 percent in the next eight years.” Currently, Saint Lucia has a room stock of just over 5,000 rooms spread across large and small hotels, villas, guest houses and apartments. Acting CEO of the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority, Mrs. Tiffany Howard says, “This is a welcome development and great news for the tourism industry. The SLTA continues to negotiate for more airlift into the island and having a new, modern airport to leverage with airline partners is a huge asset.” The Saint Lucia International Airport development plans will boast some of the finest wedding and honeymoon activities on the Island At present, Saint Lucia welcomes close to 400,000 stayover visitors every year, with the most significant number coming from the US market (45%), followed by the Caribbean (20%), the UK (18.5%) and Canada (10.5%). Tourism accounts for 65 percent of the island’s economic activity. Last year the government instituted a US $35 airport development charge (ADC) on each arrival to finance the US $100 million in loans from the Taiwanese government. The Taiwanese are also providing much needed technical support on the project. Construction of the St. Lucia new airport is slated to begin early in 2019 with the goal of having the facility fully operational by the end of the year 2020.