Senior tourism official, Delano Seiveright, says there’re some encouraging signs as Jamaica begins to make moves to reopen the US multi-billion dollar sector which is key to its economic fortunes.

Over the past few weeks, the sector has largely been shutdown due to the devastating impact of COVID-19.

The US media reported last night that a survey found that leading US travel agency, Virtuoso, has included Jamaica as among the destination which Americans are looking forward to visiting when COVID-19 travel restrictions are eased.

Mr. Seiveright, who’s a senior strategist in the Tourism Ministry, is welcoming the development.

Mr. Seiveright says it’s important that the tourism sector be reopened but in a manner which takes health concerns into consideration.

He says over 1-hundred-and-50-thousand direct Tourism employees are out of a job due to the COVID-19 crisis.

The senior tourism official says the Bartlett-led Ministry is in preparation mode for the re-opening of the sector and, Mr. Seiveright says there are additional developments which augur well for the future of Jamaica’s tourism sector.

A Private Sector Perspective

President of the Private Sector Organization of Jamaica, PSOJ, Keith Duncan, says the 1-hundred and 20 billion dollar hit to this year’s budget is yet another indicator of the importance of getting Jamaica’s economy back up and running as soon as possible despite the COVID-19 crisis.

Details of the impact COVID-19 is having on the government’s estimates of expenditure and revenue were revealed in Parliament yesterday by Finance Minister Dr. Nigel Clarke. 

Mr. Duncan says the Government will lose 81 billion dollars in revenues or 12 per cent of total revenues this financial year.

The PSOJ President says the economic challenges facing Jamaica are not inconsistent with global trends.

Mr. Duncan says there’s an urgent need to get revenues on track.

He says a resumption of economic activity while maintaining pro-health best practices are crucial.

Keith Duncan, Private Sector Organization of Jamaica President.

He was speaking on Cliff Hughes Online today.