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Turks and Caicos Islands switching time zones for more sun

Turks and Caicos believes more sun will help boost tourism.

Turks and Caicos believes more sun will help boost tourism.  (iStock)

The Turks & Caicos Islands is switching to a new time zone, citing potential benefits to its tourism-dependent economy.

Employment Minister Ricardo Donhue Gardiner said Wednesday that adopting Atlantic Standard Time will provide a boost to resorts, bars and restaurants as well as “allowing our residents to enjoy a little more sunshine.”

The tiny territory will move its clocks forward an hour on Sunday to get later sunsets. Atlantic Standard Time is followed year-round by eastern Caribbean islands and the Maritime provinces.

The British Caribbean territory has historically followed Eastern Standard Time along with eastern U.S. states. During winter months, the islands’ peak tourism season, the sun goes down around 5 p.m. in Turks & Caicos.

Airlines and shipping companies were notified months in advance.