DANCING ABROAD: Bartlett and members of his team posing with Google executives following a recent travel marketing meeting.
FOR the first time in its history the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and its affiliate members will be staging a world conference on tourism in the Americas. Jamaica has been selected to play host. Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett made the revelation as he delivered his message to mark this month’s observance of Tourism Awareness Week (September 24 to 29).
The historic event, dubbed The Global Conference on Jobs and Inclusive Growth: Partnerships for Sustainable Tourism, takes place at the Montego Bay Convention Centre from November 22 to 29, and will bring together over 150 ministers from countries that have tourism as a critical activity. In addition, some 500 companies involved in tourism services and activities across the globe – and more than 1000 delegates – will be in attendance.
The primary aim of the conference? To provide an opportunity to increase awareness of the role tourism can play in achieving social and economic growth. A major highlight attendees can look forward to is the launching of the ‘Declaration of Montego Bay’ – an action plan for creating a more sustainable tourism sector, one that generates income and employment, stimulates trade and linkages and protects our natural and cultural environment.
“We know that done the right way, tourism has tremendous capacity to create decent jobs, provide opportunities for inclusion and education and contribute to preserving cultural heritage and the environment,” Minister Bartlett observes. “Let us all work together to create a sustainable tourism sector that benefits the needs of our visitors, the industry, the environment and our communities.”