Prime Minister, Andrew Holness, says Jamaica is one of the easiest places globally to start a business because the Government has levied no new taxes on Jamaica’s businesses or households in the past eight years.
“That has given a very long, stable and predictable runway and confidence for businesses to plan and execute. That is a commitment that we intend to keep as long as possible to inure business confidence and support the development of long-term value for business, and for that reason you should invest in Jamaica,” the Prime Minister emphasised.
He added “to further [enhance the] business environment, our national investment policy aims to make it easier to invest in projects that are sustainable, innovative and contribute significantly to Jamaica’s economic and social development.”
He was addressing the opening ceremony for the ninth annual Outsource to Latin America and the Caribbean (O2LAC) Global Digital Services Summit at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in St James on Wednesday (June 14).
Holness noted that with Jamaica’s economic recovery from the fallout caused by the COVID-19 pandemic under way, now is the time for businesses to invest.
He told stakeholders that the island’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew by an estimated 2.7 per cent during the January to March 2023 quarter, compared to the same period last year, with the services industry expanding by 3.8 per cent.
“This represents our eighth consecutive quarter of economic growth. Our overall economic output levels have now surpassed pre-COVID-19 [pandemic] levels, one year before our projected timeline,” the Prime Minister further stated.
Additionally, Holness said Jamaica’s net international reserves (NIR), as at March 31, 2023, totalled some US$4.15 billion, representing a 38 per cent increase on pre-COVID-19 levels.
He further informed that Jamaica, the Caribbean’s leading outsourcing destination, now boasts a cadre of more than 60,000 persons working in the global services sector.
The Prime Minister also noted that Jamaica’s unemployment rate has fallen to approximately six per cent.
“There has never been a better time to invest in Jamaica. Jamaica is in the midst of a remarkable economic rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic and the overlapping global economic shocks that occurred after. Jamaica, even during the pandemic and especially now, is open for your business,” Holness declared.
O2LAC is a longstanding initiative by the IDB’s Integration and Trade Sector, aimed at unleashing regional countries’ full potential in the fast-growing global digital services industry. Jamaica is the first English-speaking country to host the summit.
The event gives Latin American and Caribbean startups and entrepreneurs the opportunity to network, broaden their views, and engage with investment funds, multinational corporations, governments, and like-minded peers.
Approximately 600 representatives are participating in the two-day summit, which concludes on Thursday (June 15).