The number of tourists visiting Jamaica in the first nine months of 2015 increased by 5.5% over the corresponding period in 2014, according to a statement by the government of the island.
Over the period the country received 1.6 million tourists with the highest number of visitors being recorded in September and coming predominantly from the US and the UK.
Jamaican Prime Minister, Portia Simpson Miller, said that the latest wave of investment in Jamaica tourism sector is a proof of confidence, both locally and internationally, in the future of that Caribbean country.
"The tourist arrivals also reflect the government’s effort to create an environment to attract and promote investment in the luxury tourism sector," Simpson Miller said.
According to the prime minister, Jamaica tourism represents a source of economic stability for that Caribbean country, providing employment for 180,000 people and contributing $2 billion annually to the government budget. Jamaica tourism sector received investments totaling $537 million over the past four years.
Recently, Jamaica reported a 5.5% increase in foreign visitor arrivals from January to September this year, and it expects a further increase for the rest of the year. Tourism Minister, Wykeham McNeill, attributed that increase to the reactivation of the marketing and promotion of the country’s major destinations in the source markets.
He added that there should be an even greater increase in foreign tourist arrivals beginning December 15 (the start of the high season), because 60,000 seats will be made available to the public on direct flights by US companies Frontier Airways, American Airlines and Southwest.
Like in other Caribbean states, tourism is a major source of income and jobs in Jamaica, so their governments are strengthening policies and strategies to foster the growth of the so-called smokeless industry and to guarantee quality services.