Sun | Oct 22, 2017

PAJ triumphs at World Travel Awards

Published:Tuesday | October 4, 2016 | 12:00 AM
Dr Horace Chang (second left), minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, shares a photo opportunity with Chris Frost, vice-president, World Travel Awards, and the ladies representing Sandals Ochi Beach Resort at the World Travel Awards gala held in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, recently.

The leading role that the Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ) has played in the development of Jamaica's cruise product was again brought into sharp focus as Jamaica, for the 12th consecutive year, was recognised by the World Travel Awards (WTA) as the Caribbean's leading cruise destination.

The PAJ, which falls within the remit of the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, has responsibility for the management, marketing and development of the cruise shipping sector in Jamaica. The PAJ also received two others awards at the WTA gala, which was held recently in Ocho Rios, namely: Caribbean's Leading Cruise Port - Port of Ocho Rios and Caribbean's Leading Home Port - Port of Montego Bay.

The World Travel Awards rewards and celebrates excellence across all sectors of the tourism industry. Its brand is globally recognised as the ultimate hallmark of quality, with winners setting the benchmark to which all others aspire.

Cruise shipping is a business segment on which the PAJ has placed seminal strategic focus and, in this regard, is pursuing a number of initiatives to develop the country's cruise offerings in an effort to enhance its competitiveness. This include current port and landside development works at the port of Ocho Rios. Projects presently under wayinclude an upgrade of the Reynolds Pier berthing infrastructure as well as the Reynolds Pier landslide facility, which are expected to improve access to ground transportation as well as refine the general aesthetics of the port facility in an aim to enrich the cruise passenger experience.

 

SIGNIFICANT INVESTMENT

 

The PAJ has also made significant investments in Falmouth. Its Streetscape Project, which is scheduled to be completed by year end, undertakes the creation of walkways along designated roads in the town. It also creates drains to convey grey water away from commercial and residential properties, which is a hindrance to the ease of pedestrian movement. This initiative will enhance the cruise passenger experience throughout the town of Falmouth and also benefits the residents and businesses in the community.

The facilitation of the shipment of Liquified Natural Gas to Jamaica via the port of Montego Bay has accelerated the PAJ's master plan for the development of the port. The port of Montego Bay is located close to hotels, attractions and the airport thus making it an ideal location for home porting activities. Major infrastructural changes are currently under way to meet the increasing demands for home porting operations.

The PAJ has undertaken a number of port and infrastructural development projects at all its ports, including those previously mentioned. This, combined with innovative marketing strategies and customised cruise packages are part of the organisation's efforts to ensure Jamaica's cruise shipping sector continues to be a hallmark of the global cruise industry, while fulfilling the PAJ's mandate of promoting sustainable economic growth and job creation.