JIS News

The country’s hotel-room count has increased by 123 per cent over the last 20 years, with the figure reaching 19, 550 in 2006.
“Ten years ago, there were only 14, 502 hotel rooms and 20 years ago, only 8, 779. In order words, Jamaica’s hotel room-count has increased by 123 per cent between 1986 and 2006,” said Minister of Information and Development, Donald Buchanan.
The Information Minister, who was making his contribution to the 2007/08 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives yesterday (June 5) said that the 10, 771 new hotel rooms added, have created an estimated 44,000 new direct and indirect jobs, representing an average of more than 2,000 new tourism-related jobs every year over the 20-year period.
In 2005, 1, 284 new rooms were added from four new hotels; while 733 hotel rooms came on stream last year, from the construction of another four new hotels. This year alone, at least 1,500 new rooms will be added and “we expect to add 1, 500 rooms each year for the next five years. In addition, the Harmony Cove project is expected to add another 1, 500 rooms by 2011,” the Development Minister added.
The spate of new construction, he said, is expected to create a further 40,000 jobs, as there will be increased demand for world-class Jamaican masons, artists, chefs, architects, teachers, plumbers, designers and contractors.
He told the House that more jobs are expected to come from other investment projects with linkage to tourism including the development of the Seville Heritage Park in St. Ann; Falmouth, Trelawny; Spanish Town, St. Catherine; Fort Charlotte, Hanover; Milk River Bath in Clarendon; and Fort James and related sites in Port Royal.

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