Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism, Senator Irene Sandiford-Garner.
Rather, as pointed out by Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism, Senator Irene Sandiford-Garner, this four-day reggae event benefits this island’s economy in a number of ways.
“The growth of the Barbados Reggae Festival highlights what is possible when vision, entrepreneurship and diligence coincide. We must not see this Festival as merely providing entertainment for the period April 23rd to April 30th, 2017. Instead, let us recognize that it adds value to our tourism industry and it boasts our overall product. This contribution is reflected in the overseas online ticket sales which were recorded at 5,000 for the Festival in 2015-2016.”
She added, “The hosting of this Festival on annual basis has the potential to create a multiplier effect on the economy. Importantly, it encourages travelers to visit Barbados during our slower season, which stretches from April to November. This not only helps to create a year-round tourism industry, but also has a knock-on effect for the economy.”
Sandiford-Garner was at the time addressing the launch of the Festival at Kesington Oval. This launch was attended by sponsors, the media and other key stakeholders.
She congratulated the organizers on their annual success and encouraged them to continue to grow and expand the Festival. She also stated that the Digicel Barbados Reggae Festival currently “has pride of place on Barbados’ annual calendar of events as a national festival. Furthermore, this festival is considered right now to be Barbados’ biggest annual private sector, entertainment production, attracting local, regional and international patrons with an average of 5,000 at the [Reggae] Beach Party; 6,000 at Vintage Reggae [Show and Dance]; and 13,000 at Reggae on the Hill.”
Also addressing the gathering was Chief Executive Officer of the National Cultural Foundation, Cranston Browne. He, too, highlighted some of the benefits enjoyed by various sectors because of the staging of Digicel Barbados Reggae Festival, and made the call “for Barbados to be the entertainment hub of the Caribbean.”
This year’s Digicel Barbados Reggae Festival’s events will be on April 23rd and from April 28th to April 30th.