Edmund Bartlett speaks about the current and upcoming plans for Jamaican tourism

Published on : Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Edmund BartlettAfter busy summers, Caribbean destinations are preparing for peak winter season that lies ahead.

Winter is expected to be the culmination of a record-setting year for the Caribbean destinations. Jamaica is on target to hit its record goal of 4.2 million visitors for 2017, up from the 3.8 million it welcomed in 2016.

Edmund Bartlett, minister of tourism for Jamaica said, “Visitor arrivals have been at a record high since the start of the year as our tourism sector continues on a firm growth trajectory. We remain optimistic that this record-breaking trend will continue, which will see Jamaica surpass that 4 million mark in arrivals.”

In the first six months of this year, Jamaica’s tourism industry earned $1.46 billion in the first six months of 2017, increasing 7.5% over the same period in 2016.

Bartlett added, “The [U.N. World Tourism Organization] global conference we are hosting in November will be significant. We will discuss how to make destinations more profitable and how we stem this leakage that has impoverished several tourism-driven destinations.”
The minister confirmed the plans for Karisma’s Sugar Cane Jamaica, a $1 billion hotel, entertainment and retail project to be built near Ocho Rios over the next 10 years that will feature 5,000 rooms in seven hotels.

Bartlett said he is eager to increase Jamaica’s tourism spending. An artisans’ village also is planned for Falmouth, which will offer space for craft vendors.

“We expect to start construction on that soon for completion by the end of 2018,” he said.

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