Jamaica Successful in Bid to Chair UNWTO’s Regional Commission for the Americas

Jamaica was yesterday selected to chair the United Nations World Tourism Organization’s (UNWTO) Regional Commission for the Americas (CAM) for the biennium 2019-2021.

“Jamaica graciously accepts the position of Chairman for the Regional Commission of the Americas and thanks the members for the confidence which has been demonstrated. This is the first time in our history that anyone in the Caribbean has been appointed Chairman of this commission,” said the Minister. 

The elections for the Chairmanship of CAM were held during the organization’s 64th Meeting in Guatemala.

Since 1975, Jamaica has served as Vice-President of the General Assembly on five occasions over the period 1987 – 2011, and has been re-elected twice as a member of the Executive Council, serving as second Vice-Chair in 2012, 1st Vice Chair in 2013 and eventually serving as Chairman of the Executive Council for the period 2014-2015.  

In his acceptance speech, the Minister shared that “Jamaica firmly believes that the tourism sector is one that should always be guided by sound policies and has over the years worked assiduously to ensure that this is achieved at both the domestic and international levels.

Jamaica also underscores it commitment to enhancing the capacity of the Americas to plan for and manage a range of global shocks and disruptions that can be destabilizing to the tourism sector.” 

He then invited the participation of member countries in the ‘first of its kind’ Global Resilience and Crisis Management Centre which is based at the University of the West Indies in Jamaica.

The Regional Commissions meet once a year to allow Member States to maintain ‎contact with each other and with the UNWTO Secretariat between sessions of the bi-annual General ‎Assembly.  

While in Guatemala, the Minister and his delegation will also participate in the International Seminar on Destination Management, which is taking place under the theme ‘New Challenges, New Solutions.’

The Seminar will discuss current challenges and opportunities facing destination management at national and local levels, including the changing role of Destination Management Organizations (DMOs) and the development of smart destinations. 

The Minister is accompanied by Miss Kerry Chambers, Senior Director, Policy and Monitoring who will provide technical support. The team will return to the island on May 18, 2019.