Veteran hotelier and President of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) Josef Forstmayr has been appointed to chair a Special Tourism Competitiveness Task Force, which has been charged with finding meaningful and creative solutions to what has been described as significant challenges facing the hospitality sector in Jamaica and the Caribbean in general.
In making the disclosure, Jamaica’s Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett said “this task force will address challenges relating to the ground transportation sector, visa approval, information flow, upgrading of the product, and bureaucratic red-tape which affect development.”
The minister explained that he will soon be naming the full complement of the task force and the members will be called on to look at the new and emerging markets, which Jamaica is targeting and create programs exclusively for these visitors who come from diverse cultural backgrounds, and who have new demands and expectations.
Bartlett continued, “as a destination, Jamaica cannot afford to lose its competitive edge in the marketplace. This new committee will complement the Tourism Task Force that is focusing on the Economic Impact Study of Tourism, which is being chaired by former State Minister for Finance, Don Wehby. As Minister I need guidance from both committees as we plan for Jamaica’s tourism journey over the next 20 years.”