PM says Port Royal will be safe, hassle-free for tourists

PM says Port Royal will be safe, hassle-free for tourists

Friday, January 10, 2020

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PRIME Minister Andrew Holness says anti-harassment initiatives and security measures will be implemented at Port Royal in Kingston, to ensure a safe and hassle-free environment for tourists.

“We are not going to allow this new tourist destination to descend into chaos. We are not going to tolerate harassment and public disorder in this area and I am relying on the security forces to put in place the preventative measures, so that it doesn't occur,” he said.

Holness was speaking at a meeting with representatives from the Port Authority of Jamaica, Urban Development Corporation, the security forces and other stakeholders regarding the development of Port Royal, at Jamaica House in St Andrew, on Wednesday.

A cruise port terminal is being developed at the historic town of Port Royal, creating a platform for a thriving cruise tourist destination. The first vessel is slated to dock later this month.

Port Royal is one of the most fascinating locations in the entire Caribbean, with well over 500 years of incredible history, full of the most interesting characters to have ever lived.

The prime minister said the preventative measures will allow for the protection of the country, while ensuring continued growth and sustainability of the tourism sector as well as a safe and comfortable environment for visitors.

“Port Royal will not be a free-forall. It is not going to be a place for hustlers and thugs and people to come to harass, it has to be a place of order. It will also be a place where not just visitors from overseas will have the opportunity to enjoy the experience, but we want Jamaicans to enjoy the experience as well,” Holness said.

“We are not creating an exclusive zone, we are creating an orderly zone and once there is order, all persons – Jamaicans and non-Jamaicans – will be able to enjoy Port Royal,” Holness added.

Meanwhile, president, Port Authority of Jamaica, Professor Gordon Shirley, said the security department at the authority has been working with the security forces to “think about how you deal with the contingencies that might arise in that process, and so there are some planning that has been ongoing”.

Holness, meanwhile, described Port Royal as a national asset, pointing out that the rights of the people who live in the area will be recognised and protected as well as the environmental, cultural and historic artefacts and sites of the town.

The development of the area also involves restoration of key monuments in the historic town. The Port Authority of Jamaica is leading the development of the project.

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