KINGSTON, Jamaica — An impressive cadre of local, regional and international tourism stakeholders will converge in Montego Bay, Jamaica, next month to share ideas, examine best practices and discuss strategies for advancing tourism.
The annual Tourism Outlook Seminar (TOS) will take place from Nov. 20 to 21, 2014, under the theme, “Tourism: Enhancing Social and Economic Impact.” The two-day forum will be hosted by the ministry of tourism and entertainment, the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) and the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) in association with the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).
Preparations are in high gear for the greatly anticipated event, which will feature contributions from several local, regional and international experts. It will focus on areas such as enhancing tourism linkages for social and economic impact; crisis management; creating resonance in the vacation experience; developing the local memorabilia sector; and opportunities for partnership with the entertainment and creative industries.
Minister of tourism and entertainment, Wykeham McNeill, said the seminar will provide an ideal opportunity “to discuss how we plan to overcome the specific challenges affecting the tourism industry locally and in the region in order to enhance the social and economic impact of the sector, improve dialogue among stakeholders within the industry, and examine policies and strategies needed to boost competitiveness.”
“Tourism is one of the island’s major foreign exchange earners and is one of our largest employers of labor. It is therefore important that the full impact and contribution of the tourism industry be examined, understood and harnessed” said McNeill. He also pointed out that the seminar will provide invaluable insight to participating tourism stakeholders on how to further develop and grow the tourism sector.
McNeill will give the opening address at the seminar, which will see several presentations and interactive sessions over the two days, featuring speakers from the UNWTO, United States Department of Justice, Solimar International, Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA), Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC) and JAMPRO, among other local and international organizations.