Senior Director of Technical Service in the Ministry of Tourism, David Dobson, says Jamaica and other tourism-dependent countries must consistently evaluate the industry’s economic, environmental and social impact globally to ensure the sector remains sustainable and relevant.
Mr. Dobson, who described this as “responsible tourism”, said this approach would serve to minimize negative environmental and impacts, while generating greater economic benefit for locals and enhancing the well-being of their host communities.
He was speaking at the Planning Institute of Jamaica’s (PIOJ) Dialogue for Development Lecture Series at the Montego Bay Convention Centre on October 12, where he represented Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett.
Mr. Dobson said stakeholders should ensure that the wider community is kept abreast of things that are happening within the sector.
“Responsible tourism also involves the local people in decisions that affect their lives and life chances. It also makes positive contributions to the conservation of natural and cultural heritage, and embracing diversity,” he stated.
Meanwhile, the Senior Director of Technical Service noted the Ministry has consistently made community based tourism an important part of its mandate and outreach programme, adding that “we have moved away from the traditional sand, sun and sea.
“The millennial are the main persons who are traveling a lot more. They are the younger professionals and they are seeking what you would call experience and adventure,” Mr. Dobson stated.
The PIOJ’s Dialogue for Development Lecture Series is targeted at senior secondary school students and tertiary students, leaders of community organisations, leaders of civil society groups and non-government organisations and technical staff in ministries, departments and agencies.
The output of the series is to gain additional feedback from Jamaicans that will inform policy formulation and programme development.
Source: Jamaica Information Service