What Effect Does Tourism Have on Jamaica

Last Updated: 07 Apr 2020
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Extended Essay Jason Baugh School Number: 003311 Candidate Number: 003311-005 Supervisor: Mr. L. Holmes Name of School: Hillel Academy Session 2012 Subject Area: Geography Research Question: What effect does tourism have on Jamaica in relation to Social Friction and degradation on Natural Resources, specifically in the towns of Montego Bay and Trelawney? Topic Areas: Tourism, environmental degradation, social integration, cultural diffusion, development, globalization. Table of Contents Abstract3 Introduction5 Jamaica’s Hotel Industry6 Problem with Investors8 Cruise Tourism11 Jamaica’s Investment in Cruise Tourism13

Trelawney as a Capitol City15 Integrating tourists and social friction17 Conclusion19 Abstract Jamaica is a much sought after tourist destination and has a booming tourist industry that is second to almost none. With our large musical influence around the world as well as being known as a home for Rastafarians outside of Ethiopia there are more than enough reasons to visit Jamaica. With a rocky economy, tourism is a necessity for Jamaica to develop and grow and earn more money. Development of hotels and facilities for increased visits from other countries, Jamaica relies more than ever on its natural resources that it is known for.

Jamaica is accessible by air and water and caters to the contributors of over 50% of our GDP. But with the amount of people visiting, our country is susceptible to a number of problems resulting in an over To truly understand whether or not our islands natural resources are being degraded and if the nationals are being exploited or becoming violent and unlawful or experiencing trouble from the investments and developments in relation to tourism, we need to look at what is being done for the development of that sector and the level of tourism Jamaica receives.

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There are damages occurring to the environment as a result of the many activities that are now being instituted to raise funds that are generated by foreign investment and tourism. The pollution and degradation of the land comes from the building of larger buildings and increased water activity. Although these facilities are causing harm, through government legislations and application and abide to conservation laws that have been put in place over the years to facilitate and match the rate at which they are depleting. Introduction

This essay will look at the all of the tourist aspects of Jamaica. This means that it will need to focus the research on the northern coast of the island because it contains most of the tourism attractions and accommodation development on the island. Tourism is a means of globalization, opening countries to the knowledge outside of their own. Jamaica is a widely famous and known location for tourists to visit, giving it a famous reputation that precedes itself on many occasions. With tourism, there are both good effects and bad effects.

With tourism being Jamaica’s main source of income, the resources exploited are under constant use and mean that they stand to suffer the most and experience negative effects from constant interaction. The main focus of the essay will be on the towns of Trelawney and Montego Bay. These two areas are undergoing a large amount of development and an increase in the amount of visitors that are being received. As mentioned above, there are several negative side effects and each of them is present in both of these areas of Jamaica Jamaica’s Hotel Industry

Jamaica’s location geographically is the main attributor to its fame. Being of a tropical climate, the island attracts the type of people that are seeking a type of holiday that includes activities based around the natural resources that the island has to offer. Activities as such include tree top tours, river rafting, and coral snorkeling, anything that interacts with the exotic plant and animal life. The hotels that have been developed across the northern coast are built for the purpose of being central locations to activities like the ones listed above.

The developments of the hotels are investments of the hotel brands. Whilst Jamaica has the benefit of the popularity of the hotel’s name and the development of the area around the hotels increases the amount of money gained, the hotels benefit from the location for building another branch of their business. The hotel chains use the location to fuel their business. The six main hotel areas for Jamaica are Montego Bay (9,307 rooms), Ocho Rios (8,202 rooms), Negril (7,574 rooms), Kingston (2,347 rooms), the South Coast (1,369 rooms) and Port Antonio (995 rooms). (Figures from the Vision 2030 Jamaica document. At present there are 160 hotels all over Jamaica, including mainly the larger more recognized hotel chains and leaving out the small enterprises around the island. The number of rooms easily exceeds 35,000 and seems to be increasing. Some hotels are easy to see that they have a large amount of rooms like the chains Iberostar having up to 890 rooms currently, Riu Hotels currently at 701 rooms in the Montego Bay branch and even more at the 10 km long Ocho Rios branch with 856 total rooms, the large Gran Bahia Principe hotel in Runaway Bay with a total of 831 rooms and the Grand Palladium with 540 rooms total.

At present, Jamaica has a total of 29,794 rooms across all hotels and the number is only increasing with more and more development. At this rate the hotels would need to expand in a way that would create more rooms but stay within the land that they own. In cases like these, it is common for the hotel chains to try and bend the conditions of their contracts, in an attempt to exploit the government. The company that is most known for this type of bending is the Riu Hotels chain. Problems with Investors

The first reported incident started in January of 2008, with their first offense being with the neighboring residents in Mammee Bay. The locals could tell that the water, since the beginning of the building from 2006, almost two years ago, had been contaminated. Not only for neighboring residents but also in the beachfronts, there had clearly been contamination of the pristine waters. That are one of Jamaica’s claims to fame Continuing into the 22nd of April, Riu had “not responded to the charges” that was put against them and it left the chairman of Mammee Bay no choice but to take them to court.

At first, it had just been a problem of contamination of water but by taking the hotel chain to court a large amount of violations in building code was found, not only ones that are recognized globally but that they specifically signed not to do in their contracts with the government. On May 1st, Riu decided to respond publically by saying that they would remove the ‘decorations’ from the roofs and even tried to put the blame on the Mayor of the time, Mr. Charles Sinclair, for not having the plans approved. Their negligence of the building codes and building rules of Jamaica had gotten to the point that even Prime Minister, Mr.

Bruce Golding, had to speak out about it. He bluntly stated that Riu had to comply and demolish the floors that were not approved at the time or else they would face the “full brunt of Jamaican law. ” Finally by May 22nd Riu finally succumb to the will of the government and “fired up” demolition equipment hired to take down the illegal floors. This case is a representation of the ways that companies try to accomplish their goals by illegitimate means. By using improper building methods, the hotel is lacking in the quality and safety it needs. Since the incident, Riu ad legally acquired more land and were able to spread out but during the first instance, this hotel was contaminating the waters that its costumers were to be using and what is attracting and making people want to visit the Mamee Bay. By contaminating even the waterfront of the hotel, the reputation of Jamaica’s clean beach waters and clean white sand are immediately ruined and the new contaminated image remains with them. Had their system of development continue, the waters of the Mamee Bay would be an environmental nightmare and take years to get them back to a proper state.

The case is also representative of the islands attitude towards its tourism sector, showing that they care for it greatly, by reacting quickly to the problems that were occurring and to get Riu to correct their procedures. This shows that the population understands the risks of polluting our resource and what impact it would have on our tourist industry. Jamaica’s tourism stems also from activities that would open up Jamaica to other interests, rather than having it cater only to a relaxing place for people to get away. Attractions include natural or man-made horticultural, cultural, historical, equestrian, aquatic, aerial, eco-tourism, recreational and environmental facilities for tourists. ” (Page 5, Vision 2030 Jamaica) Jamaica has many different types of attractions, ranging from water parks in Negril and other water activities, nature trails and hiking and canopy tours and other nature themed and adventure type parks, several Natural parks around the island and natural attractions like the blue mountains and the beaches and canopies, all of which are centered around different types of activities that hotels can build around and cater for.

Because they are so spread out across the island, it would mean that a visitor would want to experience all of the attractions and travel island wide to experience them all. Cruise Tourism Tourism from Cruising is still a good contribution to Jamaica’s arrivals and shows for 38 percent of Jamaica’s arrivals. In 2008 it was recorded that 1. 1 million people arrived in on cruise ships and cruise passengers spent US$ 91 million in the same year. Mainly the ships that come in to the ports belong the cruise lines Royal Caribbean Cruises and the Carnival Cruise companies.

It is even thought that the main areas of our transport infrastructures are located in the expansion and improvements of our roads as well as in the airports and cruise line ports. The Ocho Rios port is shown to receive the most revenue but Jamaica also has a port in Montego Bay as well as Port Antonio. But even with the income from these ports, a fund known as the Tourism Enhancement Fund was introduced in 2005 where air passengers had to pay US$ 10. 00 and cruise passengers paid US$ 5. 00 through various means by the individual industries.

The world cruise industry has experienced positive results in the past five years with the number of passengers steadily on the rise. In 2006 about 12. 1 million passengers took cruises to about 500 ports, and this increased to 13. 2 million in 2008. The Caribbean remains the main cruise destination, accounting for 38. 2% of all itineraries. Ocho Rios is the main port of call for cruise ships. It regularly receives 679,247 cruise passengers annually 62. 2% of total cruise passenger arrivals for that year. In second, Montego Bay received 405,999 cruise passengers representing 37. % of the total. Growth has been seen over the years in the growth of the cruise industry in relation to the continuing improvement in accessibility of ports and the quality and speed of travel on cruise ships. The average percent age of the GDP growth was usually 4. 5% every year. In 2006, the transport authority noticed that there was a spike in the country’s GDP growth where it reached up to 10%. It was discovered that this was due to a series of natural disasters that affected Mexico as a vacation destination and leaving Jamaica as a default. …In 2007 and 2008 the growth rate fell to 0. 7 % and 2. 7 % respectively” (Page 13, Vision 2030 Jamaica) and this was due to both Mexico rebuilding themselves from their natural disaster but more importantly because in 2008 the world experienced the global recession crisis and this prohibited people from travel and especially discouraged them from travel and taking vacations. But even though this was true the increase in the attractiveness and appeal to travel to Jamaica that cause the improvement of the tourism sector of the island has seen an increase in cruise passengers.

The number of arrivals grew from 29% in the earlier years of tourism development 1982 to 38 % of total arrivals in 2008. Jamaica’s Investment in Cruise Tourism Jamaica continues to have high levels of people coming in and welcomes over 1 million every year from cruise passengers come to visit our shores. This could be used as an indicator to show how much people think of Jamaica as a good tourist spot that we would be able to have record levels of cruise attendance even through an economic recession, further solidifying Jamaica as a destination of choice. In 2006 the country experienced a record 1,336,994 cruise passengers arrivals, over the 1,135,843 for 2005. ” (Page 17, Vision 2030 Jamaica) These record visits did not go unrecognized and garnered Jamaica the awarded title Caribbean’s Leading Cruise Destination for 2 years in a row and The World’s Leading Cruise Destination for the first time from the World Travel Awards in 2006. These titles come with a comparable steady growth of the industry of an average 3. 2% growth annually over the past five years from 2004-2008. The government is looking into the cruise ship industry with hope and eagerness.

They are so hopeful that the government put a lot of development into a new pier built into Falmouth to add to our already three existing piers. Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett made a prediction in March 3 of 2011 that Trelawney will become the tourism capital of Jamaica from the increase of people to be coming in from the pier. It was also announced that there is going to be an addition of 10,000 new hotel rooms for the parish over the next five years. This is in addition to the current thousands of rooms currently on the northern coast.

By adding another capitol town with a new form of transport, Jamaica has made itself available to a new kind of tourism with larger quantities and expanding on what they already receive. With the opening of the pier in Trelawney brings new attraction abilities because of Trelawney as an old town. Tourists can be treated to artifacts from Jamaica’s history. Trelawney as a Capitol "We are going to make Trelawney the tourism Mecca of Jamaica. This parish, in the next five years will have 10,000 new hotel rooms. I went to Spain two weeks ago and put them back on track, the development at Oyster Bay...

It is going to happen (and) watch over the next 12 months what is going to happen at Harmony Cove," Bartlett told JLP supporters. (Jamaica Observer) The pier was estimated to hopefully bring in about US$ 500 million that will be able to be injected into the economy by the government. The pier and the tourism from the pier have created a number of jobs for the local area. The Tourism Product Development Company had trained over 400 residents of Trelawney by February of 2011 in various aspects of tourism as the parish prepares for its debut in the rising and steadily increasing cruise shipping arena.

All of these efforts were put in place in the hope that the government gets Trelawney ready for a new bustling area of tourism for Jamaica to invest in thanks to the Falmouth Cruise Ship Pier. Over US$ 50 million was spent on several aspects of the parish including training, aesthetic appearance, zinc fence removal, the creation of public parking areas and sanitary conveniences, the renovation of the historic Court House and many other improvements across the town of Falmouth to make it somewhere to visit again and more appealing. In addition to the training, over 1000 residents have been involved in tourism sensitization workshops.

This aspect is very important aspect of helping the tourists become more acclimatized to our culture rather than giving them a culture shock, an aspect that often leaves many visitors with bad first impression and can affect tourism. The enthusiasm behind our increasing cruise industry brings in the prospect of new investments. In 2006 the Port Authority of Jamaica and Royal Caribbean Cruise Limited (RCCL) signed a five year contract with each other, valued at over US$16. 5 million. This means that there will be a guarantee that the RCCL will provide a minimum of 2. million cruise passengers over the next five years and so gives us a dependable income. Additionally, the planned development of Falmouth as a brand new cruise port along with the planned expansion of the Port of Montego Bay are expected to boost the country’s chances of capitalizing from the changes in the industry. All of these changes in the ports will push the country to develop the other aspects to have a proper port like the marinas. Tourism Integration and Social Friction Social friction causes many of the problems that come from ‘language’ barriers or rather problems that come from people not understanding each other.

Another problem that arises is when tourists that come to visit get involved in the corruption or the horrible acts that people condone in Jamaica unfortunately. Also, bad impressions are also made when men are behaving inappropriately towards guests is something that would deter people from returning the island. Integration of the tourists into Jamaican society smoothly is a concern of many companies and can lead to many problems because of several reasons. The most apparent and anticipated one is the fact that not all people are comfortable with mixing with members of another race or are outspokenly racist.

Jamaica’s majority is black and so the tourist that come in may not act respectfully towards the nationals. Jamaican culture is centered around mutual respect and so if they do not show respect then the nationals don’t show any respect and the tourists, not understanding this, think that it is the Jamaican’s fault. This leads into the other problem that is cultural barriers. Jamaica’s culture is very strong and the people have a good sense of it. There are many beliefs and social norms that are different as would be visiting any country.

Sometimes, unknowingly, a tourist may do something that is normal to them but is offensive to Jamaicans, especially in relation to homosexuals. Something that is known to bring women to the country is a service called ‘Rent-a-Dread’, where women will arrange from wherever they are to meet with a ‘dread’, a male escort that will be a companion for the women for as long as they have paid for. This is technically illegal because it is almost a form of prostitution. Unlike the weed services that are heavily advertised, this is kept more secret and is usually heard about from the friends of the women who have used it before.

He problems that arise from this type of tourism is its conflict with sex trafficking laws and Jamaica’s laws pertaining to prostitution and the fact that it is illegal. Even though it can be portrayed as a tourist integration service, the participants are still using money in the transaction of pleasure from the “dread” to the woman. For Trelawney, from 2005, the feeling of crime increase coupled with the future plans for development made residents of the town uneasy and sentiments of interruption of the multi billion-dollar investment were shared among the community.

Police statistics from 2005 showed an increase in the amount of shooting crimes in that area, increasing by nine to a total of 17. It was more worrying that this was all happening around the summer period. But of that same year there had been a decline in other forms of crime like break-ins or larceny. Even in the last year, 2011, Trelawney’s court had a fair share of crimes, most of which were reportedly sexually based crimes occurring very early within the year.

But by the middle of the year the police force sought to correct the problems and made and effort to put in place a system that would help reduce crime. They employed the use of several classic methods, involving the community but mostly keeping abreast and alert to anything that was happening in the town to stay on top of it. In 2010 Trelawney had a record level of crime, dipping with 28 percent decrease in total crime for Jamaica, followed by 2011, which dipped by 27 percent by the March period of the year. Environmental Degradation

One of the main aspects of the environment that is damaged the most from interference of the tourist is the coral reef. As well as dealing with the tourist interaction, another aspect that is affecting the reefs are the increased levels of activity of the cruise ships coming in, especially with the addition of the Trelawney Pier. The coral reefs in the Caribbean are famous for how much life they have and for how clear it is. Untrained observers of the coral reef don’t understand the delicate balance of the reef and accidently throw it out of sync and cause the coral to start bleaching.

A U. K. marine scientist M. J. C. Crabbe was quoted from his work Marine Environmental Research, which looked at Jamaica’s coral reefs and attributed the changes to several aspects of environmental interference in a bog known as the World Climate Report. His finding were entered in a September 13th 2010 entry by an admin of the blog, and was quoted as to saying that the corals state of health derived from Coastal development increase, overfishing, land being developed adjacent to reefs and the work being done on Jamaica’s north coast road development.

He also went on to state that there had been improvement to the fringing corals in discovery bay at the end of 2008 and that there would have been hope but the fishermen of the area did not implement the preservation tactics that were to be installed. Conclusion Jamaica spends a lot of money on the development of new facilities to generate more income. There are new attractions being built and put up all around the place. Construction and finishing of buildings and roads are happening fast and will be able to escalate our development in other areas of the country.

A lot of the investments from foreign companies were not based on the best of contracts and so resulted in an exploitation of the country in the tax breaks and the cost of import for the foreign companies is lower, all done in hopes that it would create positive effects but it resulted in exploitation of the countries resources. There is hope that the resources will eventually gain stability and increase at a sustainable rate and continue into the future.

With legislations and laws put in place to support sustainable development, Jamaica should be on the right track to being able to continue development on the tourist sector. The coral reefs are being protected by restriction s on aquatic traffic and sanctuaries. The building of hotels and attractions destroys the environment but with new legislations and building laws, they help support the environment and stimulate growth. I believe that Jamaica’s resources will be able to sustain development because of the current laws, legislations and systems put in place.

Bibliography * http://statinja. gov. jm/ * http://www. visitjamaica. com/ * http://www. worldclimatereport. com/index. php/2010/09/13/coral-bleaching/ * http://www. vision2030. gov. jm/Portals/0/Speeches/Microsoft%20Word%20-%20Overview%20of%20launch%20of%20Vision%202030%20Jamaica-%20National%20Development%20Plan,%20Popular%20Version. pdf * http://jamaica-gleaner. com/ * http://www. jamaicaobserver. com/ * http://jamaica-gleaner. com/gleaner/20050629/lead/lead4. html * http://jamaica-gleaner. com/gleaner/20110223/news/news91. html *

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What Effect Does Tourism Have on Jamaica. (2017, May 10). Retrieved from https://phdessay.com/what-effect-does-tourism-have-on-jamaica-in-relation-to-social-friction-and-environmental-degradation/

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