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Authentic sustainable tourism attractions to be showcased during UNWTO Confab

Published:Sunday | September 17, 2017 | 12:00 AMJanet Silvera
Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett (right) gives his final report as outgoing chairman of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation’s (UNWTO) Board of Affiliate Members. The Ministry’s Permanent Secretary Jennifer Griffith looks on.

Western Bureau:

Montego Bay's Indigenous Rastafarian Village, Cockpit Country Adventure Tours and the Bunkers Hill Cultural X-perience and River Tour have been selected as showpieces for the UNWTO - Government of Jamaica International Conference.

The November 27-29 event, which is being sponsored by the Wold Bank, will highlight the biological diversity of Jamaica's natural environment, rich history and culture through the experiences offered by the three community-tourism attractions.

Tourism Minister Edmund Barlett further disclosed that the conference will facilitate technical visits to three local community-tourism enterprises.

Promising that the conference, which is being staged at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, would be the most significant event in tourism ever to be held in the Americas, Bartlett said the focus will be on jobs and inclusive growth.

The conference he said would facilitate technical visits to the three local community-tourism enterprises.

He was speaking at a press briefing for international journalists last week in Chengdu, China, where he announced that some 800 high-level tourism decision-makers are expected to land on the island's shores for the three-day event.

"There has never been a gathering of this nature, of key leaders in tourism who will be looking at best practices and how we can bring ideas and resources together. We want to look at how we can map out a blueprint of the future development of tourism, not just in the Caribbean, but in the world," he told the gathering.

Of the 800 delegates, some 157 of them represent government ministers, as well as stakeholders of the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Caribbean Development Bank, the Organization of American States, and a number of key regional organisations such as the Caribbean Tourism Organisation and the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association.

The cruise, accommodations and airline sectors are also expected to be actively involved in this upcoming conference, he stated.

Organised within the context of the United Nations International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, the global conference will explore partnerships through sustainable tourism, emphasising in particular that tourism is the creator of jobs and can be the lifeguard of a floundering economy.

"Jamaica is pleased to cement itself in history as we host the decision-makers of the tourism industry across the world."