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Jamaica Tourism Minister steps up lobby for vaccine equity at Global Tourism Recovery Summit

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Jamaica Tourism Minister Bartlett

Jamaica Tourism Minister Hon. Edmund Bartlett has stepped up his lobby for players in the global community to make their voices heard about the issue of vaccine equity and its implications for global economic recovery, as well as the full restoration of the tourism industry.

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  1. The summit focused on efforts by the global community to restart the tourism industry with leadership and coordination.
  2. Discussed was the unequal distribution of vaccines which may lead to a global humanitarian challenge.
  3. 1.7 billion doses of vaccine have been administered across the world, but it only represents 5.1% of the globe.

The Minister renewed his appeal during the just-concluded Global Tourism Recovery Summit chaired by the Minister of Tourism of Saudi Arabia, His Excellency Ahmed Al Khateeb, and the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Secretary-General, Zurab Pololikashvili, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.  The summit focused on efforts by the global community to restart the tourism industry with leadership and coordination.

During the summit, Bartlett, who was supported by his colleague, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Senator, the Hon. Aubyn Hill, said that the unequal distribution of vaccines may lead to a global humanitarian challenge, that will have direct implications for smaller states such as Jamaica.

“We are concerned that a greater humanitarian challenge will emerge if this process of vaccine inequity continues. Too many countries will find their economies in tatters and the livelihood of their people in peril. Jamaica is at risk because we have a low vaccination level of less than 10% and that is of concern. If categorization is to be made in relation to levels of vaccination, countries like Jamaica will be left behind due to our limited access to vaccines,” said Minister Bartlett. 

During his presentation to several of the top ministers of tourism across the Middle East and other sections of the world, he emphasized that a few countries had cornered the global supply of vaccines. He shared that as of May 26, 2021 “a total of 1.7 billion doses of vaccine were administered across the world, but it only represented 5.1% of the globe.”

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About the author

Linda Hohnholz, eTN editor

Linda Hohnholz has been writing and editing articles since the start of her working career. She has applied this innate passion to such places as Hawaii Pacific University, Chaminade University, the Hawaii Children's Discovery Center, and now TravelNewsGroup.