The 2014 edition of the annual Jamaica Product Exchange – better known in the trade as JAPEX – is underway at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in St. James. Press Today’s Ian Stalker and Mitchell McClung are on site covering the event and report that hundreds of overseas buyers – a strong Canadian contingent is on hand – are gearing up to meet with Jamaica’s top tourism product suppliers.
The annual event is put on by the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA) and the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) and provides the ideal forum for leading suppliers of the country’s tourism product to meet with travel wholesalers and tour operators in a professionally-organized business exchange.
Over the three days, participants will be engaged in discussions, appointment scheduling, networking and scheduled tours of hotels and attractions.
As Jamaica’s director of tourism, Paul Pennicook sees it, the three-day trade show is “the single most important business generator for the island’s tourism product, and brings together travel wholesalers and tour operators from Europe and the Americas with Jamaica’s leading tourism suppliers to conduct business negotiations.”
Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, Dr. Wykeham McNeill, said that JAPEX 2014 comes on the heels of a landmark year for tourism in 2013, which saw Jamaica welcoming a record of over two million stopover visitors.
“JAPEX 2013 welcomed well over 100 buyer delegates, media and travel writers from traditional and emerging markets and facilitated over 200 supplier delegates from all six resort areas. This impressive turnout not only underscores the fact that JAPEX remains a vital institution for our tourism sector but is also proof of the attractiveness of our tourism product and the strength of brand Jamaica in the international marketplace,” the Minister said.
Seen in the photo, from l to r, are Jamaica’s Sandra Scott and Philip Rose.