KINGSTON, Jamaica— Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett today in Madrid, Spain spoke at the official launch of a strategic alliance between international tourism giant Grupo Piñero, which owns Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group private sector arm, IDB Invest, and Banco Popular Dominicano, to promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth through tourism in Jamaica and the Dominican Republic.
The agreement will result in an investment of US$200 million in Grupo Pinero's Bahia resorts in both countries.
The agreement was possible as the three institutions share the belief that tourism can help local economies grow while simultaneously encouraging inclusive and sustainable tourism.
"Tourism is the world's fastest and most immediate convertible economic activity. Therefore, this particular action today is so critical to the development of the Caribbean and the world. A statement is being made here about how we create debt rearrangement and the financial infusion to enable faster recovery. That fast recovery must not be irresponsible, and that's why the elements that deal with sustainability and resilience are so important,” said Bartlett.
Grupo Piñero stated that this funding will assist in moving forward with the reopening and start-up of their hotels, as well as provide a boost in the recovery stage and post-pandemic growth. Similarly, a revitalisation of tourism activity in a sustainable manner that, in turn, allows for the attainment of a balance in the economic, social, and environmental fields.
Bartlett commended the partners, noting that the alliance being formed will have positive returns for the people of Jamaica. He shared that public-private collaborations of this nature are very important to boost the sector's competitiveness and put tourism at the service of recovery in the most efficient way possible.
"I congratulate all the teams who are involved in this programme today. The recovery of tourism is going to be predicated on strong business responses — private-public partnerships that will enable sustainability,” the minister said.
Among those in attendance were President of the Dominican Republic, Luis Abinader, the Dominican Republic's Minister of Tourism, David Collado; Chief Executive Officer of Grupo Piñero, owners of the Bahia Principe Hotels, Encarna Piñero and Senior Advisor and Strategist in Jamaica's Ministry of Tourism, Delano Seiveright.
Grupo Piñero is a Spanish tourism group founded by Pablo Piñero in 1977. They have 27 hotels worldwide, including Bahia Principe Grand, which is the largest hotel in Jamaica.
Bartlett is leading a small team in Spain to participate in the highly anticipated annual international travel and tourism tradeshow, FITUR, from January 19 to 23, 2022.