A Tourism Economic Impact Study is to be conducted to identify the economic, fiscal, social and environmental impact of the development of an additional 15,000 to 20,000 hotel rooms to augment Jamaica’s existing stock.
This exercise will be spearheaded by the Ministry of Tourism, Portfolio Minister, Edmund Bartlett, announced as he closed the 2023/24 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on yesterday (June 20).
He said the study’s objectives are to identify and evaluate the potential impact of the proposed developments on gross domestic product (GDP); foreign exchange earnings; investment; government revenue and expenditure; income and employment (direct and indirect); and key related sectors such as agriculture, construction, manufacturing and entertainment.
The study is also intended to identify and evaluate the potential impact of the proposed developments on infrastructure needs; the environment; and individuals (particularly in relation to housing, transport, and recreation); and provide recommendations to mitigate potential negative impacts while capitalising on positive effects, as well as a credible, rigorous evidence base to inform public awareness of the value of the tourism industry to Jamaica.
“This is the most substantial increase in room stock over the shortest period of time in Jamaica’s history. It represents a uniquely transformative moment. We must seize the moment to obtain the maximum social and economic benefit,” Bartlett said.