Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says protocols to facilitate the reopening of the tourism industry, which was adversely impacted by the novel Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), have been drafted and are being reviewed by the Ministry of Health and Wellness.
He made the announcement during Friday’s (May 29) virtual ceremony at the Ministry’s offices in New Kingston to handover 10,000 masks to frontline industry workers.
Tourism is among the sectors hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, with several hotels and attractions having to scale down or close operations.
The protocols, which are contained in an 88-page document, will target all segments of the industry including – accommodation, attractions, water sports, craft shops, shopping, cruise ports, airports, contract carriage, restaurants and bars.
Minister Bartlett said once the document is finalised and signed off on, “we would have, perhaps, the most rigorous set of protocols that could be available anywhere in the world to protect, not just the workers… but the whole country, as we [look to reopen] the industry when the Prime Minister announces [that date]”.
The Minister also advised that the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the World Tourism and Travel Counsel (WTTC) will be briefed on the protocols.