Jamaica to Host Biggest Conference in Region Come November

Photo: Contributed Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett (fourth left, head table) and representatives of several government ministries and agencies, as well as key private-sector groups and companies, discuss plans for the upcoming United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Global Conference, to be held from November 27 to 29, at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, in St. James. The meeting was held on February 17 at the Montego Bay Convention Centre.

Story Highlights

  • Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says the United Nations World Tourism Conference (UNWTO), to be held in Jamaica in November, will be the biggest the country and the region have ever seen.
  • He said heads of the two largest cruise companies – Royal Caribbean Cruise Line and Carnival Cruise Line – have now expressed an interest in participating, giving the conference more clout in terms of international reach.
  • Mr. Bartlett noted that when the choice of venue was first announced at a UNWTO meeting in Armenia last year, the selection of Jamaica was unanimously applauded by member countries.

Minister of  Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says the United Nations World Tourism Conference (UNWTO), to be held in Jamaica in November, will be the biggest the country and the region have ever seen.

He said heads of the two largest cruise companies – Royal Caribbean Cruise Line and Carnival Cruise Line – have now expressed an interest in participating, giving the conference more clout in terms of international reach.

“The cruise sector has never really been a part of the UNWTO, which makes their participation an even bigger deal. These are the two biggest cruise lines, and their influence across the world is legendary, so that the spotlight will be on Jamaica,” the Minister said.

He was addressing the UNWTO planning committee at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in Rose Hall, St. James, on February 17.

Mr. Bartlett noted that when the choice of venue was first announced at a UNWTO meeting in Armenia last year, the selection of Jamaica was unanimously applauded by member countries.

The UNWTO conference will be held from November 27-29 at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in St. James. More than 800 international and local participants will be engaged in plenary sessions and workshops on a range of subject matters pertinent to tourism, including development assistance and investment partnership opportunities.

“We are expecting to have 157 countries converge on our shores for the purpose of this conference. We are expecting the agencies of the United Nations and, with some push, the Secretary General himself. We are also expecting the multilaterals that have financial and other relationships with the development of the tourism product across the globe,” the Minister said.

He  pointed out that all ministries affiliated with the Ministry of Tourism will be represented, including the ministries of foreign affairs; agriculture; local government; entertainment and culture; national security; health; education, youth and information;  and transportation, and the Office of the Prime Minister.

“I want to single out the Mayor of Montego Bay and to have him know that the spotlight will also be on the city,” Mr. Bartlett said.

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