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Mahahual town merchants suffering due to cruise ship passenger monopoly

Mahahual, Q.R. — The mayor of Mahahual says five months after the reactivation of the cruise industry, the town is still not seeing any economic recovery due to the in-place monopoly.

Mahahual mayor Pedro Marcial Rodríguez Cobos says the monopoly of ship passengers at the cruise dock is preventing the town of Mahahual from economic recovery. He said there are nearly 300 tourist service providers who continue to suffer due to these monopolistic practices of preventing cruise ship tourists from entering the town.

Rodríguez Cobos says its been five months since the reactivation of the cruise ship industry, and although ships dock at Mahahual, the only beneficiary has been the consortium that operates the terminal.

“It has always been like this. First them and then us. They have several companies to which they give priority and then they give us only what they cannot handle,” he said.

He said since the reactivation of the cruise industry, passengers have been kept within the area of Gran Costa Maya as a “health bubble”, which leaves the rest of Mahahual marginalized.

It is a disagreement that has already been raised with the Secretary of Tourism and the directors of the port, but without results, he said stressing that the agreements that they do reach are not respected.

“It was assumed that the dock, when it was built, was built for the community of Mahahual so that its economy could take off, but the only ones who have taken off are them,” he stated.

Years ago, an agreement had been reached with the owner of Costa Maya, Issac Hamui Abadi, but his stake in the terminal was sold to another company.

“They occupy everything, rent bicycles, set up their tents and only take passengers there. We can’t verify it, but they (the passengers) are told not to go to town,” added the mayor.

He said he understands that there is an investment in these businesses, but the locals of Mahahual also have money invested in businesses.