JIS News

Jamaica’s Minister for Tourism, The Honourable Edmund Bartlett, has elicited the interest of Oxford University to conduct a study on the impact of Tourism on Jamaica’s economy.
This, after the University approached him when he announced his medium to long term vision for tourism in Jamaica to the key players in the UK travel industry at London’s World Travel Market last week.
“When I heard recently in news that Jamaica had enjoyed single digit economic growth, it especially aggrieved me was that what should have been represented as the tourism sector was statistically represented as a miscellaneous category called Hotels, Clubs and Other,” stated the Minister.
“This is too fundamental a sector to occupy such a miniscule space in our national accounts and I am pleased that the Oxford University group will be coming early next year and that will provide critical information and sound direction for Jamaica’s satellite accounting capabilities and allow us to effect better planning in the sector and assess the industry’s needs,” Minister Bartlett continued.
The Tourism Minister led a 30 strong Jamaican delegation at the show, with exhibitors ranging from accommodation providers to attractions and ground handlers. He was accompanied by Director General Dr Carrole Guntley of the Ministry of Tourism; Mr Basil H. Smith, Director of Tourism, Jamaica Tourist Board; Mr John D. Lynch, Chairman Jamaica Tourist Board; and Mr David Shields, Deputy Director, Jamaica Tourist Board.
During the show, Minister Bartlett and his team conducted a series of high level meetings with tour operators and airlines servicing both the UK, Spanish and Irish markets, including: TUI Travel; Thomas Cook; Caribtours; Caribbean Connections; British Airways and Virgin Atlantic. The delegation also conducted interviews with almost 20 media outlets including broadcast, print and online, trade and consumer publications and diaspora media.
During the exhibition the Minister presented Andaman Discoveries in Thailand with the award for Best for Conservation of Cultural Heritage Award in the Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Awards on Wednesday 14th November. The JTB sponsored the award to demonstrate their ongoing commitment to sustainable tourism in Jamaica. Minister extended an invitation to the overall winners of the award, The New Forest, to visit Jamaica in the New Year so that the island may benefit from their success at providing visitors with an environmentally friendly experience.
Minister Bartlett also hosted a number of events during his visit including an Appleton’s Rum Tasting Media Event on stand at World Travel Market and a gathering for diaspora agents to thank them for their ongoing support of the destination.
World Travel Market is the second largest travel trade show in Europe and provides operators in the travel trade with the opportunity to network and conduct business. This year’s event ran from November 12 – 15.