During the first six months of the 2017 calendar year, Jamaica generated $1.46 billion in tourism earnings, recording a 7.5% growth over the corresponding period in 2016.
In addition, the country welcomed 2,165,330 visitors up to the end of June this year, which was 3.9% higher than the corresponding period in 2016. The figures included 1,186,646 stopover visitors and 978,684 cruise passengers.
Tourism Minister of Jamaica, Edmund Bartlett, while announcing these figures, said a record 104,098 stopover visitors arrived during the first two weeks of July, representing 14.9% increase over the corresponding period last year.
The Minister said these out-turns indicated that the industry was, at the end of June, ahead of the government’s projected growth targets, aimed at increasing visitor arrivals to five million and generating $5 billion in five years.
Bartlett said the cumulative out-turns for 2016 and the year-to-date indicated that “we really would be looking at a 5.5% increase and $1.6 billion (in) earnings, which would be a little over an eight percent increase in earnings over the previous year.”
Of note, he said the industry’s growth averaged between eight and 11% for the first three months of the 2017/18 fiscal year, from April to June.