International Expert to Strengthen Tourism COVID Resilience Plan, says Bartlett

Jamaica Tourism Minister Hon. Edmund Bartlett has announced that his Ministry hired international crisis recovery expert Jessica Shannon to the COVID-19 Tourism Recovery Task Force’s secretariat in an effort to strength the country’s resilience plan for the sector.

Speaking at a digital press briefing hosted by the Tourism Ministry earlier today, Bartlett noted that “she comes to us with a wealth of experience in crisis management. Her work with PWC internationally is going to play a big role in our being able to draw on international best practices, based on her own experiences.”

Shannon is a Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC) Advisory Partner and has served as their deployed point partner throughout the Ebola crisis, focusing on the response and recovery efforts in West Africa. In this context she served as a senior advisor to private companies and government organizations in the design of strategy, policies and protocols as well as risk identification and monitoring.

“She was very essential in working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention among others to work out the protocol for the Ebola pandemic. … So, bringing her on board, particularly for her to focus on fine-tuning the protocols over the next few days, is going to be seminal, in terms of enabling us to deliver that protocol the Prime Minister wants in short order,” he added.

In addition to her current client engagements, she is part of a small task force established to refine and drive the implementation of PwC’s global near- and mid-term strategic transformation in the wake of COVID-19. 

She has been a Subject Matter Expert for the G20 think tank on economic and financial resilience and a speaker at conferences hosted by Harvard University, the World Bank and the United Nations.  Prior to PwC, she gained strategy experience as a management consultant with the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and on the global leadership team at EY. She also has an MBA from Harvard Business School. 

This is the second addition to the committee from Price Waterhouse Coopers, as it also includes PWC’s Senior Partner, Wilfred Baghaloo, who chairs the COVID-19 General Tourism Working Team sub-committee.

Baghaloo was also the Co-Chairman of the Tourism Working Group for the Jamaica Tourism Linkages Committee which assessed how to ensure more local linkages to tourism industry and the development of local supply industries to the tourism sector.

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The Ministry established the COVID-19 Tourism Recovery Taskforce last month, with a public-private sector collaboration consisting of key stakeholders from the tourism sector, the Ministry of Tourism, and Agencies of the Ministry. It will be supported by two Working Teams – one for general tourism and another for cruise tourism – and a Secretariat.

The Task Force has been tasked to bring about a realistic view of the sector’s baseline or starting position; develop scenarios for multiple versions of the future; establish the strategic posture for the sector as well as a broad direction of the journey back to growth; establish actions and strategic imperatives that will be reflected across various scenarios; and establish trigger points to tackle action, which includes a planned vision in a world that is learning to evolve rapidly.

“It is an honor and a pleasure to support the Jamaican tourism sector in this regard. I appreciate the opportunity… I have worked in a number of different crisis response situations to support Governments and the private sector,” said Shannon.

Jamaica Tourism Hires COVID-19 Tourism Recovery Expert
Jessica Shannon

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Media contact:  Corporate Communications, Ministry of Tourism, 64 Knutsford Boulevard, Kingston 5, Tel: (876) 920-4926-30, Fax: (876) 906 1729

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Linda Hohnholz