Caribbean Tourism and Development: An overview
The overall objective of the study is to review recent experiences and strategies of the Caribbean tourism industry, with a view to determine the potential role of tourism in promoting sustainable development of the Caribbean. Specific attention has been paid to the linkages between tourism and tourism related industries and services, and their impact on sustainable development, poverty alleviation and the conservation of nature.
Tourism is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. It is an increasingly important source of income, employment and wealth in many countries and its rapid expansion has been considered as an interesting possibility for sustainable development (including poverty reduction) in developing countries. In the Caribbean region it is the most important industry especially after the crisis of other sectors such as agriculture and manufacturing. But despite its impacts on the local economy its potentialities are under utilized because it remains insufficiently understood especially by local policy makers. This study is aimed at examining the present tourism situation and potentialities of the Caribbean region in order to define a set of recommendations (priorities and actions) that could be taken into consideration by national (governments, associations, etc.) and international (donors, institutions, etc.) stakeholders for promoting tourism as a tool of sustainable development in the Caribbean. Finally, some examples of sustainable tourism projects developed in the region and Latin America are identified in order to show how national governments and international institutions are actively involved in this matter.