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Gov’t pushes artisan villages

Published:Thursday | June 2, 2016 | 12:00 AM
Edmund Bartlett, Minister of Tourism.

The Ministry of Tourism is pushing ahead with plans to construct artisan villages in resort areas across the island.

Portfolio Minister Edmund Bartlett says the first facility will be built in Ocho Rios, with others to be established in Montego Bay, Falmouth, Port Antonio, and Negril over the next five years.

The minister, who unveiled the design for the Ocho Rios artisan village to tourism stakeholders during a tour of the resort area recently, said the venues would be "one-stop shops" for authentic Jamaican food, music, heritage, and craft.

The facilities, the minister noted, would provide an avenue for Jamaican artists and craftsmen to expose and express their creativity, while limiting the volume of imported craft items that are being sold in the industry.

"I was recently in Africa, and I remember having one of the artists in the craft village inscribing my name on a piece of art. It was something to behold. When something as creative as that is done, then it can draw business to the craft village and assist with the tourism marketing," he pointed out.