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JM | Aug 4, 2022

Ed Bartlett calls for Commonwealth tourism convergence

/ Our Today

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Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett speaking during the opening 2021/22 Sectoral Debate Presentation in the House of Representatives on April 20, 2021. (Photo: JIS)

Jamaica’s Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett has called for the use of tourism convergence to reposition the British Commonwealth.

The minister’s call was made in a meeting with senior directors and advisors of the Commonwealth Secretariat in London and comes as destinations globally continue their recovery efforts from the fallout caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Addressing the August 1 meeting, Bartlett remarked that, “Tourism is a confluence of many economic activities and social engagements and is driven by consumption. Tourism also has the fastest convertibility rate of all industries, so it is the fastest way to generate foreign exchange outside of grants.”

“I think that the Commonwealth, which has 56 countries, 2.5 billion people and large group of highly tourism-dependent countries plus large countries, is an enormous opportunity for tourism convergence as an instrument of recovery,” he added.

The Commonwealth is an association of 56 countries working towards shared goals of prosperity, democracy and peace. The Commonwealth Secretariat is the intergovernmental organisation, which coordinates and carries out much of the Commonwealth’s work, supported by a network of more than 80 organisations.

The headquarters of the Commonwealth Secretariat in London, England. (Photo: Flickr.com)

According to Minister Bartlett, “Now is the time for us work together within the Commonwealth to help the recovery of tourism through strategic approaches like harmonising visa protocol, increasing air connectivity; development of multi-destination experiences and human capital development to build capacity. We have enough people and ideas within the Commonwealth to strengthen our tourism activities in these countries.”

He also suggested that there be a meeting of tourism ministers within the Commonwealth to discuss these strategies as part of the recovery efforts.  

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