Autor: Rui Jorge Cabral
The governing bodies of Visit Azores, the new name of the former Azores Tourism Association (ATA), presented their collective resignation, but the board, chaired by Carlos Morais, will remain in office until February 28, ensuring "the association’s regular operation" until that date, when a new board is expected to be elected.
The announcement was made in a press release, in which Visit Azores also reveals that two General Assemblies were scheduled.
The first General Assembly was scheduled for January 24, with the sole point on the agenda being the readmission of the founding members of Visit Azores, including the Regional Government and SATA.
The second General Assembly, scheduled for February 24, will discuss and approve the Annual Report and Accounts for 2022, the Activities Plan and Budget for 2023, as well as elect the new social bodies.
According to Açoriano Oriental, the Regional Government has already sent a letter to Visit Azores expressing its intention to reintegrate the association, although establishing conditions related to its functioning.
After the reply from Visit Azores' board, the Government can then formalize its request to rejoin Visit Azores, as SATA has already done, before the first General Assembly.
Once the Government and SATA have formally rejoined, the way will also be cleared for a new board of directors for Visit Azores to be elected at the General Meeting on 24 February. According to the recently revised statutes of the association, the board will be chaired by a member appointed by the Regional Government, plus four other members, two appointed by the Government and two appointed by the association's members.
The current governing bodies of Visit Azores were elected for the 2019-2022 period. The new board will not include the current chair, Carlos Morais, who – more than a year ago – took over as vice mayor of Horta and who has already expressed – more than once – his willingness to leave the board of Visit Azores.
Although Visit Azores has not yet approved its budget for 2023, it does know, however, with what funds it is counting on for promoting the Azores: just like last year, an amount of 2 million and 850 thousand euros under the Regional Government's responsibility, plus EU funds, which should amount to a total investment of around 11 million euros.