South coast home-port­ing could boost tourism sec­tor

Jamaica Gleaner - - OPINION & COMMENTARY -

THE EDI­TOR, Sir: THE CRUISE ship­ping/tourism in­dus­try in Ja­maica is poised for fur­ther growth with the ad­di­tion of more ves­sels home-port­ing in Mon­tego Bay.

Home-port­ing is when a ship uses a port/ma­rine ter­mi­nal as its home re­gard­less of its port of reg­istry. This fa­cil­i­tates pas­sen­gers to be­gin/ter­mi­nate a cruise in the home port. Ground trans­porta­tion and tours will be im­pacted pos­i­tively not only for MoBay but also for Kingston.

Pas­sen­gers fly­ing in to board ves­sels may opt to ar­rive in Kingston for a stopover, then travel to the Se­cond City and, in so do­ing, get a cross-sec­tional view of the is­land’s to­pog­ra­phy, ef­fec­tively killing two birds with one stone.

Ja­maicans book­ing cruise on home-ported ships will also have the ad­van­tage of board­ing here as op­posed to fly­ing to Mi­ami or to an­other lo­ca­tion.

ADD NEW LIFE

Long-term plan­ning is in­te­gral for sus­tain­able eco­nomic growth. If the plan­ners had thought of home-port­ing, cruise ships would be home-port­ing at Fal­mouth. It is not too late to ex­pand the pier to ac­com­mo­date home-port­ing.

Ja­maica’s cruise ship­ping ports are all lo­cated on the north­ern sec­tions of the is­land. Hav­ing a cruise pas­sen­ger ter­mi­nal on the south­ern coast would be a cat­a­lyst to­wards the 2030 vi­sion and would add new life to tourism. At­trac­tions would fol­low by way of small, medium and large en­ter­prises. This long-term, sus­tain­able ini­tia­tive will bring eco­nomic growth and, ul­ti­mately, raise the stan­dard of liv­ing for all Ja­maicans.

Over to the PAJ for continuing port ex­pan­sion and busi­ness de­vel­op­ment. Re­mem­ber that Cuba is strate­gi­cally po­si­tioned next door. CAR­LOS PIPHER car­loslind­say1@ya­hoo.com Kingston

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