Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says Jamaica has submitted its candidature to occupy one of five seats allocated to the Regional Commission of the Americas on the Executive Council of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) for the period 2018 – 2021.
“Jamaica is one of the four English-speaking Caribbean Member States of the UNWTO. So it is quite an honor for us to occupy a position that will have us at the helm of the decision making process of the tourism sector — not only in the region but for member states across the globe,” said Minister Bartlett.
The selection of regional representatives is scheduled to take place during the 61st Meeting of the UNWTO Regional Commission for the Americas in San Salvador, El Salvador, and Roatan, Honduras, May 29 – June 2, 2017.
“The confidence placed in Jamaica internationally puts us in a unique position to reap a number of benefits which will undoubtedly have a positive impact on the people of Jamaica. As a result of this, we have been able to form a number of key partnerships, strengthen linkages with other sectors and witness an increase in investments. I am therefore very confident that if successful, this will undoubtedly be multiplied,” he said.
He noted that he will also use the opportunity to further promote the UNWTO, Government of Jamaica and World Bank Group Conference on Partnerships for Jobs & Inclusive Growth through Sustainable Tourism, which will see the country hosting overseas participants from some 157 countries at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in November of this year.
“The spotlight of the world will be directly on Jamaica and the publicity we will get from this conference is invaluable. More than 800 international and local participants are expected to attend the conference to discuss issues that we hope will result in partnerships for sustainable tourism for development and new investments,” he said.
The Minister left the island yesterday (May 30) and is being accompanied by the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Jennifer Griffith. The 61st Meeting of the UNWTO Regional Commission for the Americas meeting will also feature an international seminar on New Technologies Applied to Tourism on June 1 in Roatan, Honduras.
The Minister is expected to return to the island on Sunday, June 4, on the inaugural Southwest Airlines non-stop flight from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport to Montego Bay.