The Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) is to provide $1 billion over the next five years for the provision of housing solutions for tourism workers.
This was disclosed by Portfolio Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, during his contribution to the 2018/19 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives today (May 8).
He informed that the different types of housing solutions will be provided through the Housing Agency of Jamaica (HAJ).
Through discussions with the TEF and the Housing Agency of Jamaica, a number of initiatives have been proposed, which include developing parcels of land identified for housing for tourism workers, and providing basic infrastructure for informal settlements in which a number of tourism workers reside.
Mr. Bartlett said a survey of housing needs for tourism workers was conducted in the accommodations sector.
“When we did the research, we found that more than 88 per cent of the workers in the industry cannot even access National Housing Trust (NHT) solutions,” the Minister said.
In addition, the workers also indicated that they would not be able to afford a house costing more than $2.5 million.
This financial year, the TEF will provide $170 million for the first phase of implementation.