JIS News

In its annual report for 2007/08, which was tabled in the House of Representatives on Tuesday (September 21), the Ministry of Transport and Works pointed out that the review period was a challenging but productive one for the country’s transportation system and the physical infrastructure.
“Jamaica’s air, land and maritime transportation experienced extensive developments in 2007,” the report notes.
“Road construction/works showed significant advancement with the continuation of some major projects, such as Highway 2000 and the Northern Coastal Highway Improvement Project,” the report adds.
Development in this area cost the Government $5.5 billion, compared with $2.5 billion in 2006. The overall construction/works expenditure also allowed for work on flood damage and rehabilitation programmes, traffic management repairs, and maintenance of roads.
Maritime and air transportation also had substantial advancements, particularly in relation to the implementation of the 20-year Capital Development Programme at the Normal Manley International Airport, and the fifth phase development of the Kingston Container Terminal.
The country’s two international airports welcomed 55 per cent of visitors to the island. “With a spend of approximately US$1.2 billion on the island annually, stop-over visitors account for the more than 90 per cent of earnings from tourism. Therefore the continued growth in inbound tourist traffic remains essential to the success of the Sangster International Airport, in particular, and Jamaica’s travel industry as a whole,” the report said.
There was also a growth of four per cent in passengers going through the airports for the period.
Meanwhile, in 2007/2008, some 30,628 tonnes of cargo were handled at the island’s ports, and 3,715 ship calls were made. Energy consumption in the sector was relatively flat compared to 2006, with transportation consuming 11.98 million barrels of petroleum in 2007, accounting for 41 per cent of the total 29.1 million barrels consumed by the country. Road and rail transport used 50.7 per cent of the 11.98 million barrels. Additionally, fuel consumption by the shipping industry stood at 3.97 million barrels, the report concludes.

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