The Tourism and Hospitality Association of Guyana (THAG) has asked that Government work towards the establishment of the Tourism Hospitality Institute; a request which would be reviewed according to Minister within the Finance Ministry, Jaipaul Sharma.Minister within the Finance Ministry, Jaipaul SharmaThe request was made on Thursday last during the first round of consultations for the 2019 National Budget. Minister Sharma had met with the group of THAG officials, headed by its President, Mitra Ramkumar.According to Minister Sharma, the Administration would seek to prioritise the request as it will be an asset to Guyana’s tourism industry.“It is something we may have to prioritise, I will have to address it and see how we could speed it up,” Sharma is quoted by the Department of Public Information as telling the team.The Tourism Institute is aimed at ensuring that the country improves its human resource capabilities within the tourism sector and produces world-class personnel to meet the kind of demands that the growing industry requires.While funding has already been approved by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and a plot of land identified, there are still some minor issues to be ironed out.According to the THAG President, the “world-class hospitality institute” will shape future hospitality professionals. He said this will especially be helpful for single parents and other vulnerable groups that are seeking employment.“They can actually get in there. Right now, the tourism industry provides jobs for all of these people. The challenge, however, is actually the training of persons and it takes a while to train them in order for them to be productive,” he told the Minister.Persons will be taught housekeeping and front desk services among many others.“If we have an institute, it sends a message that we are serious about tourism. We want your support on that.” Ramkumar continued, “there are people who come to hotels simply because of their housekeeping service.”The THAG President emphasised that the Institute will be self-sustained.