Jamaica’s COVID-19 Recovery Efforts Discussed on UK’s Sky News

Jamaica's COVID-19 Recovery Efforts Discussed on UK's Sky News

[KINGSTON, Jamaica] – Jamaica’s Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett was interviewed on the UK’s Sky News, one of the largest news organizations in the world, by journalist Ian King to discuss the island’s COVID-19 recovery efforts and impressive Winter Tourist Season figures.

In the interview, which took place during the Ian King Live show, Bartlett highlighted that tourism is the driving force behind the island’s economic recovery from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jamaica’s Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett

Jamaica’s Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett

Tourism Growth

“We have had three successive quarters of growth. Starting with 13 per cent in the first quarter, 7.8 in the second and now we are at 5.8 in the third. Tourism has been the driver. We have had just a little over 1.6 million visitors for the year so far, and we earned a little over US$2 billion,” said Bartlett.

He added that “more than 80,000 workers have returned to the industry since the recovery began, and the inter-linkages between tourism and the various sectors have grown and responded well.

During the interview, Bartlett also noted that, based on current trends, the industry is set to see pre-pandemic arrival figures by the end of next year.

Trends

“We are now at about 60% of our 2019 arrival figures. We expect that by the end of 2023, going into 2024, we should go back to our 2019 figures and then grow beyond that. This will allow us to reach the targets we have set for ourselves of 5 million visitors and earning US$5 million for the people of Jamaica,” said the Minister.

Despite the prevalence of COVID-19 on the island, the Minister stated that the health and safety measures in place have effectively limited the virus’s spread. Especially in high-traffic tourist areas.

The island has been able to do this by developing Tourism Resilience Corridors, which have a 0.1 per cent infection rate. The corridors span most of the island’s tourism districts. This allows visitors to experience more of the country’s distinctive offerings since the health authorities have authorised visits to several COVID-19-compliant attractions located along the corridors.

“The corridor is a bubble that enables visitors to enjoy the full extent of the experiences that they seek while preventing them from becoming involved in the wider community activities that may assist in spreading the virus. We have also established the Jamaica Cares programme, which is a significant initiative that provides an end-to-end security arrangement for the visitors and the protection of our locals, ” he said.

Sky News is a British free-to-air television news channel and organisation. Sky News is distributed via a radio news service and online media. It is owned by Sky Group, a division of Comcast.

 

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