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    Small and medium tourism enterprises key to Jamaica’s tourism resilience

    Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says that his ministry has made it a priority to re-imagine the local tourism sector by creating strategic policies, programmes and initiatives that can aid in building the resilience and increasing the capacity of local small and medium-sized tourism enterprises (SMTEs) to earn more.
    Speaking at the Tourism Enhancement Fund’s Business Development Information Session for SMTEs at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, the Minister said, “We called this gathering and brought all these stakeholders here today to understand the need that we see for building resilience and capacity for our small and medium-sized players who are at the heart of tourism.”
    “Eighty percent of the value of tourism experiences worldwide is driven by small and medium enterprises. The unfortunate fact is that less than 20% of the returns from tourism go to this sector. So, as we rebound and reimagine, we are bringing a new dynamism to the process, and we are trying to rebalance that anomaly. We want you [SMTEs] to get a larger share of the tourism dollar,” he added.
    Bartlett noted that the Ministry and its public bodies are offering support to the SMTEs and hospitality workers using three pillars: international certification through the Jamaica Centre of Tourism Innovation; financial support through businesses such as the Jamaica National Bank and the EXIM Bank; and marketing through the Jamaica Tourist Board.
    In providing an update on the lending arrangements with the EXIM Bank and Jamaica National, the Minister stated that, “we put $1 billion into the EXIM Bank. They have unlended $1.5 billion to 620 partners who have taken up loans, and they still have $500 million to unlend because it’s a revolving scheme. What it means is that you pay back, and that’s good. We also put $200 million with Jamaica National with the menu of products that they offer, including the TEF 5x5x5, and that has produced results where $900 million has been unlended, and they still have capacity to lend again because it revolves.”ADVERTISEMENTAs part of increased efforts to boost the competitiveness of the local tourism product and to offer support to budding SMTEs, Bartlett shared that the Ministry of Tourism will be developing an innovation-based tourism incubator (ITI). The initiative, led by the Tourism Enhancement Fund, will support entrepreneurs in converting innovative ideas into viable businesses.
    “We are investing in ideas through the innovation incubator that we have established. We have $31 million in this year’s budget to do just that – to go and mine ideas and find young people all across Jamaica with ideas because tourism is driven by ideas,” said the Minister.
    The Business Development Information Session for SMTEs is an initiative of the Tourism Linkages Network, a division of the TEF, which was executed with key partners such as the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ); EXIM Bank; Jamaica Manufacturers & Exporters Association (JMEA); Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC); Jamaica National Bank Small Business Loans; and the Companies Office of Jamaica.
    The session brought together key business development experts in collaboration with the TEF, and will highlight the products and services available to SMTEs to facilitate their expansion, such as: competitive business loans; GOJ Financing Facilities; Vouchers to assist SMTEs with technical needs; Effective business marketing; Business Development Grants; Product testing services (to ensure products meet market requirements); and Product standardisation services (to ensure products meet market requirements).

    NYC & Company presents what’s new across five boroughs during IPW

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    NYC & Company presents what’s new across five boroughs during IPW

    Fred Dixon, president and CEO, NYC & Company
    At a press conference held during IPW—a leading generator of US inbound international travel—in Orlando, Florida, NYC & Company announced new and future destination updates and initiatives, underscoring New York City’s unparalleled vibrancy, diversity and welcoming spirit. Fred Dixon, NYC & Company’s president and CEO predicted that by year’s end, the City will recapture over 80 percent of its record 2019 visitation levels, as the tourism industry recovers and as New York City once again proves its resilience and indomitable spirit.
    “New York City is experiencing an extraordinary revival, with the iconic sites visitors know and love, plus many dynamic, new developments across all five boroughs,” said Fred Dixon, President and CEO of NYC & Company. “From our world-class attractions, hotels and Broadway shows, to the authentic small businesses and diverse experiences found across neighborhoods citywide, NYC is back in a big way and already welcoming visitors from around the globe.”
    In addition to highlights of What’s New in New York City, Dixon presented NYC & Company initiatives including the new Get Local NYC campaign, recently-launched multicultural content hubs on, a new Halal Travel Guide and the upcoming 30th Anniversary of NYC Restaurant Week.
    Destination highlights include 9,000 new hotel rooms coming online this year with new properties such as Aman New York and NYC’s second Ritz-Carlton; more than 20 new Broadway shows from classic revivals to innovative debuts; and upcoming developments and openings across infrastructure and transportation, with upgrades across the region’s three major airports; arts and culture including the brand-new Museum of Broadway, The Louis Armstrong Center and the American Museum of Natural History’s Gilder Center opening this year, with The American LGBTQ+ Museum and the Universal Hip Hop Museum coming soon; performing arts venues such as Lincoln Center’s reimagined David Geffen Hall debuting in October and the iconic Apollo Theater expansion next year; culinary highlights from new fine dining establishments to unique food halls across the five boroughs; retail including the renovated Tiffany & Co. Flagship on Fifth Avenue and the return of Century 21; big events including NYC Pride, the New York City E-Prix, the US Open Tennis Championships and summer programming across five boroughs this summer; and more.
    During IPW, NYC & Company issued an updated press resource on 22 Reasons to Visit New York City in 2022 and a brand-new “What’s New + Trending in NYC” video for the media and trade.ADVERTISEMENTThe organisation also announced the latest iteration of its neighborhood-centric Get Local NYC campaign, inspiring visitors to explore Manhattan Like a New Yorker. Originally launched in March, the new five-borough initiative encourages visitors to support small businesses citywide. Guides to Brooklyn Like a New Yorker and Bronx Like a New Yorker have already been released, with features on Staten Island and Queens set to launch this summer.
    This summer also marks the 30th Anniversary of NYC Restaurant Week, from July 18-August 21. To commemorate this historic milestone, NYC & Company is planning to launch a “Year of Culinary” in New York City.
    Recently-launched multicultural platforms on include The Black Experience in NYC, The Latino Experience in NYC and the latest addition, The Asian Experience in NYC. NYC & Company is also the first US tourism organisation to produce a Halal Travel Guide for Muslim visitors, and continues to update visitor information on LGBTQ+ NYC and Accessible NYC.
    NYC & Company is joined at IPW by more than 10 industry partners, including Academy Bus, Alliance for Downtown New York, Broadway Plus, Carnegie Hall, Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises, Fotografiska, Hyatt Grand Central New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Broadway, Rockefeller Center and Times Square Alliance. Visit the New York City delegation at Booth 2800.
    NYC & Company is considered North America’s Leading Business Travel Destination 2021 by voters at the World Travel Awards.

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    Are you ready for IMEX week?

    Carina Bauer, CEO of IMEX Group
    Although IMEX may not officially start until tomorrow, IMEX week is already truly up and running with events today including the Agency Directors Forum; Association Focus supported by AC Forum, AMC Institute, ASAE, ESAE, Ethiopia Convention Bureau, Global Association Hubs, ICCA and Tel Aviv Convention Bureau; Exclusively Corporate supported by Hubilo, Los Cabos Tourism Board and Meliá Frankfurt City; MPI’s European Business Events Forum; Association Social; and SITE Nite Europe.
    Tomorrow a series of future-focused sessions on the MPI and ICCA stage in Hall 9 will help us look ahead with sessions on how we redefine our roles as business drivers and strategist, what the new reality looks like and how the COVID-19 crisis has changed meetings and events.
    Hall 9 is also home to a daily drop-in programme of stand-out education in the Inspiration Hub’s Ocean, Forest and Canyon rooms and the Listening Collective’s Listening Lab. Make time between sessions for the IMEX-EIC People and Planet Village and, most importantly, great coffee in the Hall 9 food court!

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    Editor’s choice for maximising your day at IMEX

    Up, up and away! The IMEX team welcomes you to IMEX in Frankfurt 2022
    TodayMake a blind date with knowledge first thing as SITE and the SITE Foundation share research to help you steer a course through COVID-19, conflict and climate change: 09:00-09:50, Dialog 9.2, Hall 9.
    Head into the canyon at the Inspiration Hub, Hall 9, 10:30-11:15 to hear Skift Meetings’ Editor-in-Chief Miguel Neves give you the ultimate guide to event tech in 2022.
    Join IMEX sustainability consultant, Eric Wallinger at MeetGreen, as he shows you how every decision you make around event food and beverage influences your environmental footprint or ‘foodprint’: 13:00-13:30, Inspiration Hub campfire, Hall 9.
    Pink reigns supreme at tw’s Pink Hour with pink bubbly, pink cupcakes and pink hats, 16:00-17:00, stand G110. Or if a beer, rye-bread chips and a hygge time by the fire is more your thing, head to VisitDenmark, stand F260, 17:00-18:00.
    And if you still have networking energy to spare after a busy day on the show floor, we’ll see you up on the Galeria’s roof terrace with the spectacular Frankfurt skyline as your backdrop, for dinner and drinks at the new incarnation of cim-clubbing @IMEX, organised by CIM and EVINTRA, sponsored by Ungerboeck and Aldiana. Register here.ADVERTISEMENTTomorrowThere’s only one place to be at 06:30 tomorrow morning, and it’s not under the duvet; it’s on the start line for the IMEXrun down on the river by the Holbeinsteg Bridge. Meeting at 06:30 for a 07:00 start. Register at VOQIN stand C350. Once you’ve registered, pick up your run t-shirt from sponsors, Italy, at stand D400. On your marks…

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    5.3 million Brits plan domestic break for Platinum Jubilee weekend

    A VisitEngland survey out today shows that 5.3 million Brits are definitely planning an overnight holiday break in the UK during the extended Bank Holiday weekend for the Platinum Jubilee, bringing an estimated £1.2 billion boost to the economy.
    VisitEngland’s ‘Platinum Jubilee Weekend Trip Tracker’ survey also showed that well over a third, 19 million, are planning to take part in activities to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee, from attending a ‘Big Jubilee Lunch’ street party to lunch in a pub, restaurant or café, to watching events on an outdoor screen or attending official celebrations. In addition, almost a quarter of those surveyed were still to decide.
    VisitEngland Chief Executive Patricia Yates said:
    “The upcoming Bank Holiday is a fantastic opportunity for an extra special short-break at home or a day-out, enjoying the once-in-a-lifetime celebrations and show-stopping events for the historic Platinum Jubilee. From afternoon teas and street parties to beacon lighting ceremonies, pageants and parades, people are set to celebrate with friends and neighbours in royal style.
    “The long weekend is also set to bring a much-needed boost to the industry and destinations as the summer season gets underway and our outstanding tourism businesses will be very pleased to welcome you back.”ADVERTISEMENTLooking at those intending to take an overnight domestic break in the UK for the extended Bank Holiday weekend, the top destination type is ‘city or large town’ followed by ‘coastal town’.
    The survey also showed that a further 2.6 million people were undecided about whether to take an overnight holiday trip in the UK during the long weekend. The top reasons were ‘waiting to see what the weather is like,’ ‘waiting to see if I can afford it’ and ‘not sure where I’d like to go.’
    VisitEngland is nominated as Europe’s Leading Adventure Tourism Destination 2022 byWorld Travel Awards.

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    Seoul Tourism Organization announces participation in IMEX

    The Seoul Tourism Organization has announced it participation in IMEX, the world’s largest MICE exhibition to be held in Frankfurt, Germany, for three days from May 29 to June 2 this year. In line with the full-scale resumption of international tourism and MICE, STO plans to come out strong with preemptive marketing activities to attract international MICE delegates attending IMEX Frankfurt 2022.
    IMEX, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, is an exhibition specifically designed for MICE industry which draws 14,000 visitors from 170 countries and more than 70,000 business meetings. Expectations for this year are very high as attention is being paid to how different or similar international events, which have been canceled for the past two years due to the pandemic, will be this year comparing to the previous years.
    The Seoul Tourism Organization prepared joint marketing activities with the participating Seoul MICE Alliance members, including group presentation sessions to expand potential clientele to come to Seoul for their MICE events. Buyers can reserve a PSA meeting with eight SMA members- Channel K, Euras Tech, People & Value, Grand Hyatt Seoul, Lotte Hotels Seoul, Sofitel Ambassador Seoul, VIAGEM, Communistar -beforehand through the official website or drop in during the event.
    Also, STO prepared fun and engaging events created from globally popular K-contents, such as drama series including Squid Game to attract the attention of MICE organisers: Dalgona carving time, chimaek (chicken + beer) networking time, writing Korean names on traditional Korean fans, and taking photos with K-pop stars who lead Hallyu culture worldwide.
    PARK Jin hyeok, director of the Seoul Convention Bureau said, “We expect our participation in this year’s IMEX exhibition will be a meaningful rebooting of Seoul’s standing as a complete MICE venue. With experienced and knowledgeable Seoul MICE Alliance members, we will continue our overseas marketing to enhance its position as the best MICE city in the world.”ADVERTISEMENT

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