Jamaica is hosting a first-of-its-kind conference in Kingston next month, Caribbean Journal has learned.
The first-ever Global Tourism Resilience Conference is an initiative of the country’s Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Center at the University of the West Indies in Kingston.
This year’s inaugural event will focus on enhancing competitiveness and sustainability; cross-sectorial collaborations; international funding and technical assistance; the establishment of resilience barometers; enhanced research; the adaptation of science, technology and innovation; niche market development; human capacity-building; and small business support, among other areas, according to the center.
“As we exit the COVID19 pandemic, tourism resilience has become the epicentre of national development priorities. This is against the backdrop that tourism remains very vulnerable to disruptions like the pandemic. The staging of this conference, which is already in high gear, is therefore relevant and critical to ensuring that the industry will be able to not only recover but thrive afterwards from these disruptions,” said Jamaica Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett, who helped spearhead the event and the creation of the Resilience Center.
The event will run from Feb. 15-17, in time to mark Global Tourism Resilience Day on Feb. 17.
“Although we cannot prevent natural disasters, nor equally the devastating global disruptions that impact our region, we can and must come together as one Caribbean to strengthen our response and resilience when these types of events occur,” said said Kenneth Bryan, Chairman of the Caribbean Tourism Organization and Minister of Tourism and Transport for the Cayman Islands. The tourism resilience conference presents a timely opportunity for us all as governments and policy stakeholders to collaboratively discuss issues that are central to the development of policies that will reduce our vulnerability.”
“We fully endorse the Global Tourism Resilience Conference and the move to establish a global resilience day,” said Nicola Madden-Grieg, president of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourist Association. “The tourism sector lived through the most challenging two plus years faced with a once in a lifetime pandemic and is in advanced stages of recovery, confirming the resilience of the industry. However, we must future-proof this industry and reimagine our tourism master plans taking into consideration infrastructure, the impact of climate change, human and capital development needs, use of technology to ensure our ability to handle current and future headwinds.”
For more, visit the Global Tourism Resilience Conference.