JIS News

The government of Jamaica is moving to secure a greater share of the fast growing Chinese travel market, with estimates are that as many as 90 million Chinese could be traveling abroad annually over the next couple of years.
“Although last year, we had only a little over 1,000 Chinese visitors to Jamaica, this year, we are looking at improvements in this area,” said Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett.
He was speaking at a one-day Travel Market Workshop organised by China Outbound Tourism Research Institute (COTRI) in collaboration with the Jamaica Tourist Board today (Feb. 12), at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Rose Hall, St. James.
Minister Bartlett informed that COTRI and its tourism promotion team headed by Professor Wolfgang Arlt, have brought “a top Chinese recording artiste to do some recordings, which will ultimately help in boosting the tourism image and trade between both countries”.
He noted further that Professor Arlt had already worked on the first charter flight out of China to the island for Reggae Sumfest in July and the intention was to continue such flights from the Asian country.
Minister Bartlett said that the workshop, which attracted local and Chinese tourism interests, was the culmination of four years of work between personnel within the Jamaican Tourism Ministry and their Chinese counterparts.
In 2005, the Governments of Jamaica and the Peoples Republic of China signed a memorandum of understanding, which sets the framework for the movement of group travel between both countries.
The Minister, in his address, noted that the outstanding performance of the Jamaican athletes in the Beijing Olympics has had a tremendous impact on Jamaica’s presence in the Chinese market.
He said that one of the effects of the performance of the athletes was that Jamaica was now embedded in the psyche of the Chinese people, which would be very powerful for the country in terms of future tourism flow from that destination.
Professor Arlt, in his presentation at the workshop, encouraged diversity in the marketing of Jamaica’s tourism product, advising that more emphasis should be placed on targeting emerging travel markets.
He went on to highlight the cultural preferences of the Chinese traveler, with a view to educating Jamaican tourism interests on how to deal with Chinese tourists when they visit the island.

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