Monday, 5 September 2016

JAMAICA: An All-inclusive Destination,

Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett says the Government is looking at lands in south-western Jamaica for the establishment of a health and wellness centre to enhance the tourism product.

Speaking at the opening of the Caribbean Cannabis Conference at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, in St James, on Friday, the minister said the area being explored is in the corridor from Negril (Westmoreland) to Black River (St Elizabeth).

“I believe this will provide a very useful geographic space for us to consider a new destination in Jamaica and a destination that will be characterised by health and wellness spas, and cannabis products,” he said.

The minister said Jamaica is now at a stage of building out the area of wellness tourism, which will further add to the island’s position as a destination with a difference.

Bartlett noted that a Health and Wellness Network has been established in the Ministry of Tourism, which has been tasked with the responsibility of defining the policy that will provide the framework within which the cannabis-infused health and wellness experience will be a reality in Jamaica.

He said while Jamaica has been largely characterised as being an all-inclusive destination, there is room for other types of product offerings.

“We can do a level of product diversification which would enable us to be attractive to all demographics… and what we have seen is that cannabis-infused experiences have added much to health and wellness,” the minister said.

He said proof of the success of the cannabis-infused experience can be seen in Amsterdam and Colorado.

Bartlett said the Ministry of Tourism has been leading a process to ascertain how the country can benefit more from the industry, while building more unique experiences.