Tourism Sector Records Major Recovery Since Sept. 11, 2001


Jamaica has registered a major recovery in the tourism sector since the events of September 11, 2001 and it is now on “a strong growth path, having recovered all of the ground lost in visitor arrivals and foreign exchange earnings,” declared Prime Minister P.J. Patterson.
Speaking at the launch of Air Jamaica’s return to the Canadian skies, at the Royal York Hotel in downtown Toronto, after a 14-year break, Mr. Patterson lauded the airline for being a “steadfast partner” in helping to build the island’s economy.
He said that the airline not only brought in more than half of the stopover visitors annually, but also accounted for more than 70 per cent of air cargo traffic to the island. “Air Jamaica has forged strategic partnerships with our business and export sectors and with Jamaican communities overseas and is the prime air carrier of Jamaica’s agricultural produce to North America.”
The launch of the return of the “Lovebird” to Canada took place on Monday, April 5, at the Royal York Hotel in downtown Toronto.
“Now when our national treasure, Miss Lou feels she would like to feel the evening breeze in Jamaica for a few weeks, she can fly on her own airline again,” said Prime Minister Patterson. “When all the Jamaicans who maintain a constant flow of traffic between their adopted home and the home of their heart feel like spending a little time on the Rock, they can now enjoy true Lovebird hospitality all the way home,” added the Prime Minister.
Mr. Patterson also highlighted Jamaica’s investment arena, noting that billions of dollars of new investments were being made by investors from Europe, the United States, the Caribbean, Canada and by Jamaicans who made Canada their home. “This is part of a new and exciting phase of Jamaica’s development and a direct result of my Administration’s creative revolution of the productive sector, aimed at increasing investment opportunities and transforming our society.”
He called on the Jamaicans present to assist in the development of the country of their birth, emphasizing that they “can stay right here in Canada and invest in Jamaica.”
The Prime Minister said Jamaica was being positioned as the hub of the Caribbean and Latin America, “not only for transshipped goods but also for the production of goods and services directed primarily to the North American market.”
The Air Jamaica event was attended by a host of dignitaries including the airline’s Chairman Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart; Minister of Transport and Works, Robert Pickersgill; Minister of Industry and Tourism, Aloun Ndombet-Assamba; State Minister for Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Delano Franklyn; Member of Parliament (MP) Mike Henry; Jamaica’s High Commissioner to Canada, His Excellency Carl Marshall; Canada’s High Commissioner to Jamaica, His Excellency Claude Valle; Jamaica’s Consul General to Toronto Miss Vivia Betton; Speaker of the Ontario Legislative Assembly, Alvin Curling, former Lt. Governor of Ontario, Lincoln Alexander; Chief Julian Fantino of the Toronto Police Services.

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