Last updated: 07:00 PM ET, Tue June 28 2016

Jamaica To Establish Tourism Zone Management System

Destination & Tourism | Brian Major | June 28, 2016

Jamaica To Establish Tourism Zone Management System

PHOTO: Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s tourism minister. (Photo by Brian Major).

Jamaica’s government will establish “resort management units” to provide “a formal management structure” for the country’s resort regions, said Edmund Bartlett, the country’s tourism minister. The Negril resort district will be the first region to the new units, Bartlett said.

The management areas will be “one-stop shops” that will enable tourism entities to comply with “various quality control and standards” the government will implement, said Bartlett in a June 24 meeting with tourism stakeholders reported on the government-run Jamaica Information Service website.

The areas will receive support from Jamaican tourism-related agencies including the Tourism Product Development Company, the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) and the Tourism Enhancement Fund, said Bartlett.

Bartlett’s announcement comes following his earlier stated plans to address other resort area issues, including security and visitor harassment. Earlier this month Bartlett said 87 new district constables will be deployed in Negril and Montego Bay, another popular resort area.

Bartlett’s announcements also follow reports of continued visitor growth for the destination. Jamaica hosted 1.7 million overnight, land-based visitors between January and May, a 6.7 percent increase over the same period in 2015 said Bartlett, who was speaking at the inaugural meeting of a new tourism competitiveness task force whose members include hoteliers, government tourism officials and other stakeholders.

Bartlett described the task force as “part of the Tourism Ministry’s drive to reposition tourism to generate higher growth rates in both visitor arrivals and earnings,” and added, “this is an area that we have had to push and part of that reason too is that we have a number of rooms that are being refurbished now.”

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