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JM | May 23, 2022

Jamaica’s manufacturing and export legislative regime being reviewed

/ Our Today

administrator
Minister of Industry and Commerce Aubyn Hill delivers the keynote address during the Jamaica Manufacturers and Exporters Association (JMEA) National Exporters’ Month Breakfast Forum at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel in St Andrew last Thursday, May 19, 2022. The event was held under the theme ‘Building Back Stronger Through Exports’. (Photo: JIS)

Durrant Pate/Contributor

Jamaica has commissioned a review of its legislative regime governing the manufacturing and export sector with a view to effect well-needed changes.

The government has assembled a special team to work in tandem with officers at the Ministry of Industry and Commerce to identify the relevant laws to be changed. Already several pieces of legislation are being targeted for review.

The review is expected to spur increased activities in particular areas, thereby contributing to Jamaica’s attainment of higher levels of sustainable economic growth. The overarching goal is to create the legislative framework and environment that facilitate heightened levels of investments in manufacturing, particularly by local interests, that translate into increased exports and earnings.

Industry and Commerce Minister Aubyn Hill has charged the special team to identify the relevant laws in need of amendments for his perusal and action.

According to the senator, “… I want to look at every piece of legislation that affects [manufacturing and] exports and amend [these, where necessary]. Some of them cross ministries [and] some negotiations may have to happen, but we are going to make sure we make changes where needed.”

Need to drive exports

The minister emphasised that Jamaica’s attainment of strong economic growth “will depend on very robust exports” noting that “we have to have something to sell”.

Hill admitted that while there has been significant commercial activity by business interests “a lot of the money is not invested in manufacturing things to sell or crafting new [products] and services for export”.

“So, we’re going to have to manufacture and we need to invest in what we are doing here,” the senator lamented.

Minister Hill also pointed out that foreign direct investments were welcome, but noted that “Jamaicans with capital must [also seek] to invest [as] there are great opportunities to be derived”.

As such, he committed the Government, through the ministry to take the necessary steps to make it easy for persons to do business. Senator Hill said the increased investment in manufacturing requires the “collective will and energies of all of us” and assured that “the Government is behind you… and this minister is supporting you”.

“Our ministry is creating the environment; we are looking to remove existing barriers to trade. Partner with us and investors locally and from overseas to build back Jamaica stronger through exports, so that this country can grow,” he told last week’s Jamaica Manufacturers and Exporters Association (JMEA) National Exporters’ Month Breakfast Forum at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel in St Andrew.

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