Tue | Aug 22, 2017

Minister tapping into business of sports

Published:Saturday | April 2, 2016 | 4:00 AMShayne Fairman
Grange

Sports Minister Olivia 'Babsy' Grange says her ministry will be looking to pick up on a feasibility study conducted in partnership with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 2007 in an effort to make sports a serious foreign-currency earner.

In an interview with The Gleaner following welcome home celebrations for the island's teams to the Carifta swimming and track and field championships, at the VIP Lounge at the Norman Manley International Airport earlier this week, the minister outlined that she hopes to market Jamaica as a sports tourism destination and training facility.

"When I became minister in 2007, I had submitted a proposal to UNESCO to do a pre-feasibility study on Jamaica as a training facility for various sporting disciplines. That pre-feasibility study was funded and was actually done by someone from the University of Technology (UTech). The results were submitted to UNESCO and they were about to fund the feasibility study when we demitted office; and so we are gonna pick up where we left off, because I know that Jamaica is a brand and we should exploit that brand," she outlined.

"We can be that training facility, we can be the centre of sports tourism, the centre of culture tourism and we can be the centre of a creative industry, where Jamaica can say to the world, here we have the facilities. We have the infrastructure and we have the people with the skills to be able to provide what you need. Come to Jamaica," she pointed out.