by Claudia Gardner, Caribnewsroom
KINGSTON, Jamaica – The establishment of a marketing fund to promote the Caribbean as a premier tourism destination, is being explored by tourism ministers in the region.
St. Lucian Minister of Tourism and Chairman of the Caribbean Council of Ministers, Dominic Fedee, says he will be leading the charge, in collaboration with his Caribbean counterparts.
“So I think a major priority for the Council of Ministers now, in the short run is to make sure we put in a framework that will ensure a sustainable marketing fund for the Caribbean,” Fedee told Access Jamaica in an interview at the Caribbean Travel Marketplace Trade show at the Montego Bay Convention Centre held last month. (January 2019).
“For some reason this has eluded us, for many, many years, as jurisdictions and destinations in the Caribbean. What is important now is to make sure that we bring everyone together, that we establish ourselves as a strong Caribbean brand. I think it is one of the strongest travel brands in the world, notwithstanding our ability to come together and in a strategic and deliberate way, ensure that we promote the Caribbean brand,” the Minister added.
Fedee pointed out that further deliberations will take place with all stakeholders within the region as a matter of course.
“It has to be a public-private sector approach so that we can have the best way forward in the interest of a lot of the small hotels in the Caribbean that are not connected and they are in need of this kind of collaboration. At present, a significant portion of the hotels in the Caribbean, get very limited coverage and visibility in the distribution network globally and so what we have to do is to help them with the infrastructure; help them with the management of their inventory,” he explained.
“I am talking their room stock so they can have greater visibility so that their rooms are better distributed across the spectrum and they can compete for more air seats and to improve their average daily rates and ultimately their bottom line,” he added.