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Jamaica Tourism Minister wants Rum Festival expanded to Montego Bay

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#KINGSTON, March 5 (JIS): Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, wants the annual Jamaica Rum Festival to be expanded to the tourism Mecca of Montego Bay.

Speaking to JIS News at the second staging of the event at Hope Gardens on Saturday (February 29), the Minister noted that “festivals are a big part of what brings people to a destination” and as such, he would like to see two events held next year – one in Kingston and the other in Montego Bay.

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“Last year was an event; this year it’s a product. This is now a tourism product that we are going to make a part of our marketing arrangements, but we want to build the product a little more and we want to take this product to the mecca of tourism,” he said.

Minister Bartlett noted that the festival, which is a celebration of rum – the third most consumed liquid on earth after water and coffee – has become a signature event in Jamaica and needs to be marketed to the world.

He told JIS News that gastronomy is a key part of the linkages network that underpins the growth targets for the tourism sector, aimed at attracting five million visitors by 2021, generating $5 billion in earnings, and increasing total direct jobs to 125,000, while adding 15,000 new hotel rooms.

The other elements of the network are Manufacturing, Agriculture, Sports and Entertainment, Health and Wellness, Shopping, and Knowledge.

“We had to build out a number of products and gastronomy represented that first driver of the network. We have to utilise our Jamaican products, build on them and present them as experiences that the visitors can now come and pay for,” Minister Bartlett pointed out.

The Minister also participated in a tour of the booths and sampled some of the products and rum fusions that were on display.

“All of our Jamaican foods are beginning to find their way in our rums and liqueurs, and that is very good for gastronomy in Jamaica,” he said.

Jamaica Rum Festival is organised by the the Ministry of Tourism, Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), Tourism Linkages Network (TLN) and the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB).

The TEF, in partnership with the Ministry, contributed some $6 million for the second staging of the event, which was held over two days.

JIS NEWS by SHANNA K. SALMON

Magnetic Media is a Telly Award winning multi-media company specializing in creating compelling and socially uplifting TV and Radio broadcast programming as a means for advertising and public relations exposure for its clients.

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RBC donates $175,000 to Hurricane Beryl relief efforts

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PORT OF SPAIN — In the wake of Hurricane Beryl, RBC Royal Bank (RY on TSX and NYSE) (“RBC”) and RBC Foundation USA announced a donation of C$175,000 to the Canadian Red Cross and the American Red Cross in support of Caribbean and U.S. relief efforts.

The devastating hurricane impacted several Caribbean and U.S. communities where RBC operates, including Barbados, the Cayman Islands, and Tobago.

RBC’s contribution will support emergency relief efforts, including shelters, hygiene kits, and social assistance to those in the affected communities.

“The intensity of Hurricane Beryl this early in the season is concerning and our thoughts are with the individuals affected in the Caribbean communities as well as in the U.S.,” said Chris Duggan, Head of RBC Caribbean Banking.

“At RBC, we believe it is our responsibility to support our communities in times of need. Our donation to the Red Cross, will provide immediate assistance to those impacted, ensuring they receive the necessary resources to recover and rebuild.”

Commenting on the Caribbean generosity as well as that of our larger RBC community, Duggan added: “The response of the RBC Caribbean Banking employees, as well as that of our larger RBC community has been generous and unhesitating. In response to the disaster, our colleagues are coming together in many unique and incredible ways and donating personally to help those affected.”

Those that would like to support the relief efforts can donate to the Canadian Red Cross at www.redcross.ca or the American Red Cross at www.redcross.org.

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PM Proposes Municipal Status for Negril

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#MontegoBay, Jamaica, July 13, 2024 – Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, has highlighted the need for Negril to have its own local authority, which will enable the town to better manage its affairs.

The Prime Minister, who was speaking to members of the Negril business community and other stakeholders on July 12, said the resort town has outgrown its current governance structure, posing challenges both to infrastructure and administration.

“Negril as a town is growing far beyond its infrastructure, it is also growing far beyond the system set up for local governance. Our system is that the towns are within a parish and the boundaries determine which local authority has control over the town,” Mr. Holness said.

“We will now have to do the necessary consultations and make the necessary legislative changes to give Negril its own Municipality. Towns and cities must be managed and managed from a local level,” he added

The Prime Minister said that due to the growth and expansion of Negril, the town has crossed over from Westmoreland into Hanover, leaving the question as to who is in charge.

“Based on all the communications I have received the stakeholders want to do things for themselves in Negril. I know there will be a challenge because of the parish boundaries, but we will have to work that out. Currently both Westmoreland and Hanover can take ownership, leaving the question as to who really is in charge,” he added.

Mr. Holness said that while there have been discussions on the matter in the past, it was time to give Negril its own Municipality.

“I know when we talk about this, especially for those who don’t live in Negril, there are indeed questions as why we would want to do this and upset the governance architecture that currently exist,” the Prime Minister added.

“Where the problem lies is where the solution should be. If the proper structure is put in place, I am convinced you could see an improvement in how the town is managed. Negril is going through what Portmore went through…to manage its own affairs. Any superior authority should empower the residents to do things for themselves. Negril has also outgrown not only it’s physical infrastructure but its management structure,” Mr. Holness further noted.

Negril, renowned for its stunning beaches and vibrant tourism industry, has experienced unprecedented growth in recent years.

 

Contact: Garwin Davis

Release: JIS

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Repair Bill for Trelawny Estimated at $30 Million

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#MontegoBay, Jamaica, July 13, 2024 – The Trelawny Municipal Corporation is reporting a preliminary repair cost of $30 million, due to the impact of hurricane beryl on the parish.

Mayor of Falmouth, Councillor Collen Gager made the disclosure during the Corporation’s monthly meeting held on Thursday (July 11).

He said that the damages were minimized due to the massive drain cleaning work carried out early in the hurricane season, across the nine divisions in the parish.

He stated that emphasis was placed on the clearance of storm drains, culverts and sink holes, particularly those in flood-prone areas.

“I must emphasize that we were well prepared…and we must also note… how quickly the roads …were cleared,” Mayor Gager stated.

He credited the relatively low repair bill to the work done by the Corporation’s Disaster Preparedness team, other members of staff and volunteers before and after the hurricane.

“I could see the councillors…from all nine divisions …out working after the storm…seeing to the welfare of residents,” Mayor Gager said.

He also informed that major damage was done to the Trelawny Infirmary, the nearby building which houses the Poor Relief Department, the roof of the Falmouth Market, and the recently established Falmouth Transportation Centre.

The Mayor however said that repair works were already underway.

He projected that ongoing sanitizing of the male and female wards, kitchen and bathrooms, as well as repairing the perimeter fence to the infirmary property should be completed within days.

Meanwhile, Mayor Gager said he was pleased that Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie has committed funds for repairs to the market.

This, he said, would contribute to maintaining public order in restricting the selling of agricultural produce and other consumer goods to that space.

 

Contact: Sharon Earle

Release: JIS       

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