Recent reports coming from the office of the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ) indicated that the tourism industry in Jamaica is experiencing a hefty first quarter. This announcement was recently made by the Director General of the PIOJ, Dr. Wayne Henry. Dr. Henry was speaking during the PIOJ semi-quarterly media briefing on May 30, 2023, when he announced this.
According to Dr. Henry there is an increase in stopover arrivals that stands at 55.5 percent, or a 457,996 increase, when compared to the same period last year.
In continuing his report on the significance of the increase, the director general also mentioned that total visitors’ expenditures have increased to US$761.6 million relative to $276 million in the corresponding timeline in 2022. The report also pointed to the increase in cruise ship passengers, totaling 300,237 up from 49,870 visitors in 2022, seeing also 110 ship calls, an increase from the 41 vessels that came along similar timeline last year.
Dr. Henry also commented on the growth of the sub-sectors within the industry and stated that these areas have also shown growth and have seen an increase, an estimated 30.8 percent. In explaining the respective areas benefiting from the increase, Dr. Henry said the hotel and restaurants were the largest areas of the service industry to grow and that they will continue to benefit from the increase. He said coupled with their increase is the effective marketing strategies used by these two sub-sectors.
Henry noted that overall, all areas of the industry have seen growth in their respective areas. He added that transport, storage, and communication recorded the second highest increase. This growth, he noted, comes because of an air-transport component and this is credited to the increase in passenger movements which is up by 46.5 percent.
According to Dr. Henry, growth measured from this increase of arrivals to Jamaica has the industry now with an estimated increase of 3.8 for the first quarter, in 2023. This he noted comes because of the continued strengthening of the travel and tourism sector. As a result, the service industry has enabled Jamaica’s economy to grow by a 2.7 percent so far, for 2023.