Regional Tourism Policymakers connect with Caribbean political leaders in marketplace

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the Region's tourism sector hard

(Caribbean Tourism Organizaton Press Release, 12 Jan 2021) – Regional tourism stakeholders and political leaders of Caribbean heritage in the marketplace will explore ways to help the tourism sector recover from COVID-19 in an online discussion organised by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), the region’s tourism development agency.

The forum will bring together political leaders and influencers in the United States and Britain with tourism interests in the Caribbean, as well as those who do business in the region.

The panel includes Congresswoman Yvette Clarke of the 9th district of New York and Paulette Hamilton of the Birmingham City Council in the UK (both of whom are of Jamaican heritage),  Dr. Mathieu Eugene,  the first Haitian-born official elected to the New York City Council and Michele Jawando (Bermuda, Jamaica and St. Kitts and Nevis), a public policy expert,  former  general counsel and senior advisor to United States senator, Kirsten Gillibrand (D- NY) and currently head of U.S. strategic engagement and public policy partnerships at Google.

During the hour-long discussion the panel will delve special programmes or incentives that might exist for the Caribbean, how Caribbean tourism leaders can engage them to help the industry emerge from COVID-19, how Caribbean tourism leaders can work with the various local and national governments, policymakers and other institutions to build a more sustainable tourism industry and what can be done together through tourism to help improve the lives and livelihoods of the people of the Caribbean and their constituents.

The forum, dubbed Touching Base, takes place at 11:00 a.m. (10:00 a.m. New York, 3:00 p.m. UK) tomorrow Wednesday, 13 January and will be streamed on the CTO’s Facebook page (

This panel is the first in a new series of discussions organised by the CTO on various aspects of tourism, the pandemic’s impact on the industry and opportunities that lie ahead.  Other planned activities include:

Wednesday 27 January – A discussion on how Caribbean tourism can increase business following the successful trial and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. Panellists include representatives from the Boston Consulting Group and the World Travel and Tourism Council.

Wednesday 10 Feb – A session to identify effective ways to package, monitise and market Caribbean culture – food, music, ancestral heritage, dance, etc – as an attractive part of the post-COVID-19 tourism strategy.  

Wednesday 24 Feb – This session will look into what we can expect from the 2021 peak season, what the travel sector needs to do to ensure the public has the confidence to book and whether we’ve seen the end of the traditional tourism peak. 


About the Caribbean Tourism Organization

The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), which is headquartered in Barbados, is the Caribbean’s tourism development agency comprising membership of the region’s finest countries and territories including Dutch, English, French and Spanish-speaking, as well as a myriad of private sector allied members. The CTO’s vision is to position the Caribbean as the most desirable, year-round, warm weather destination, and its purpose is Leading Sustainable Tourism – One Sea, One Voice, One Caribbean.

Among the benefits to its members the organisation provides specialised support and technical assistance in sustainable tourism development, marketing, communications, advocacy, human resource development, event planning & execution and research & information technology.

The CTO’s Headquarters is located at Baobab Tower, Warrens, St. Michael, Barbados BB 22026; Tel: (246) 427-5242; Fax: (246) 429-3065;;

For more information on the Caribbean Tourism Organization, please visit and follow CTO on FacebookTwitterInstagram and LinkedIn to be part of the conversation.

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