First Look


0 | 2018-06-12 13:59:00

The Shadow Minister of Tourism, Dr. Wykeham McNeill, MP, is calling on Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett to address concerns swirling in the media regarding the increased marginalization of Jamaicans in the tourism industry.
“While I acknowledge and understand that we currently exist in a global environment, it is also for this reason that we must ensure that space is created for the small and medium players in Jamaica to benefit from tourism,”Dr. McNeill said.
Dr. McNeill further stated that “The industry climate currently has more businesses consolidating and becoming vertically integrated and requires intervention by Minister Bartlett to protect those who will be most affected.”
The Opposition Spokesman is calling on the Minister to meet with members in the industry who are already being affected such as the transportation sector, the entertainment sector and the craft traders, who have expressed a deep sense of abandonment by the government.
Dr. McNeill is further requesting that the Linkages Council move with alacrity to bring players in the industry in direct contact with local sectors such as the manufacturing industry as well as our artisans and others. This is necessary, so that the benefits of tourism can redound to more Jamaicans and make the economic impact required to move our country forward.
“These issues are troubling and I will be addressing them in a more fulsome manner in my sectoral presentation in Parliament next week Tuesday,” said Dr. McNeill.
The Minister must act as a bridge between the local sectors and hoteliers to facilitate open dialogue between the two. Dr. McNeill explained that during his time as Minister, a series of meetings were held to bring both sides into direct contact including working with the JHTA to host the speed-networking programme, however, this must be supported by an intense and sustained effort to deepen the linkages.
“The cry from our entertainment sector must not go unheard and there must be a coordinated effort to find a solution so that our talented musicians from the land of Bob Marley, Peter Tosh and Dennis Brown can continue to play their role in the local sector,” Dr. McNeill asserted.

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