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CMExpress looks set to be a hit

A cadre of Jamaican and Caribbean journalists as well as public and private sector officials will polish their reporting and communications skills in Jamaica this Autumn while focusing on topics of top priority: communications and sustainable tourism development.Delegates at CMExPress, a new one-day version of the Caribbean Media Exchange (CMEx), will be encouraged by regional and international experts to sharpen their skills and to put their training to the test.Ê CMExPressÊwill explore state-of-the-art techniques and revisitÊimportant communications fundamentals. Also under study will be evolving issues new to theÊtourism industryÊsuch as health, agriculture and the environment.

“DestiNations” is the name of the World Tourism Forum for Peace and Sustainable DevelopmentÊto be launchedÊby President Lula in December in Brazil and participants will hear how this annual global forum will impact the way people look at tourism.

Speaking toÊthe first World Conference on Tourism Communications this year in Madrid, Ms. Becky Anderson, CNN news anchor, said the “very nature of news is often gloomy, and that to get a message across the travel industry has to be more pro-active and rely on more than press releases.”Ê In the case of breaking stories there is a need to provide “the most significant person” possible to comment on events. “There is nothing worse than a ‘no comment”.

In addition to sessions focusing on effective communications and how to establish a mutually productive relationship with the media, CMExPress will feature round-table discussions on tourism-related issues such as Community and Geo-Tourism, the 2007 Cricket World Cup, embracing national culture and heritage, HIV/AIDS, the Caribbean Diaspora and multicultural markets, the environment, and the role of the region’s youth in the future of the tourism industry.

“In an era where global access to information and misinformation is so readily available, the power of the media cannot be underestimated,” says Dr. Kenny Anthony, Prime Minister of St. Lucia. “Everyone must see tourism as a national industry and where each person has a direct stake and interest.”