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KINGSTON, Jamaica; December 2, 2019: Tourism Minister, Hon Edmund Bartlett says Jamaica is in discussions with the Government of Peru to collaborate in areas such as destination marketing, gastronomy, sport and tourism resilience. This is being done to further strengthen bilateral relations between Jamaica and Peru.
The Minister made this announcement during a breakfast meeting in Lima, Peru, earlier today with Peruvian officials and senior representatives from LATAM Airlines.
“Today Jamaica had a very fruitful discussion with officials in Peru about ways we can further strengthen our collaboration with them, now that we are about to welcome our first flight from their country to the Jamaica via LATAM Airlines,” said Minister Bartlett.
The inaugural LATAM Airlines flight will commence service later today, between Lima, Peru, and Montego Bay, with three flights per week. This will increase the number of flights out of South America to 14, with COPA Airlines currently operating 11 weekly flights between Panama and Jamaica.
“We are very connected with many of the major legacy carriers with access to more than 200 gateways. The good news, which comes from this connectivity, is that visa arrangements are now different.
So the South Americans who want to come to us no longer have to worry about visas; we have a ‘visa-free regime’ operating with most South American countries, including Peru. This is a good arrangement and I think the timing is right,” said Minister Bartlett.
During the discussions, Minister Bartlett proposed that the two countries consider a joint marketing agreement to promote the destinations. This arrangement would also include leveraging gastronomy offerings, as well as music and sport.
“We can also consider exploring the experiences of gastronomy of the two nations. We think there is hope for collaboration in gastronomy and for us to expand a range of offerings – perhaps a fusion. Music and sport are also strong options with football and Reggae music being strong cultural products,” he said.
The Minister added that another critical area that could be considered is a collaboration in areas of tourism resilience and crisis management.
“We must explore further, building our tourism resilience and innovation. We are agreeing to have the tourism school in Peru collaborating with Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Centre in Kingston, Jamaica,” said the Minister.
The Centre, officially launched in 2018, is tasked with creating, producing and generating toolkits, guidelines and policies to handle the recovery process following a disaster. The centre will also assist with preparedness, management and recovery from disruptions and/or crises that impact tourism and threaten economies and livelihoods.
Peru’s Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism, Hon. Édgar Vásquez Vela welcomed the idea of collaborating with Jamaica.
“This is a stepping point in order to improve and strengthen our bilateral relations; and tourism is a key activity in Jamaica and also should be a key activity in Peru. This is an activity that generates more income from outside Peru,” said Vásquez Vela.
He added, “We have put all our efforts in order to explore and take advantage of all our opportunities. We are working very hard in order to change the situation and put tourism as the first activity, because it is democratic and inclusive. In many cases, you do not need big resources, but good ideas.”