Development Approval Time to be Reduced from 90 to 60 Days by March 2018

Photo: Michael Sloley Finance and Public Service Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw (centre), and World Bank Country Manager for Jamaica, Galina Sotirova (right), sign the multilateral institution’s J$9.01 billion (US$70 million) Second Competitiveness and Fiscal Management Programmatic Development Policy Loan agreement on June 28 at the Ministry’s offices in Kingston. At left is State Minister in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Fayval Williams.

Story Highlights

  • The Government is targeting a reduction in the development approval process timeline from 90 to 60 days by March 2018.
  • Additionally, the Administration has taken steps to reduce the time taken to establish a business by facilitating an electronic registration process, Finance and Public Service Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw, has said.
  • Speaking at the signing of the loan agreement with World Bank Country Manager for Jamaica, Galina Sotirova, at the Ministry’s offices in Kingston on June 28, Mr. Shaw said the loan will also support the Administration’s targeted programme of fiscal consolidation and enhanced public financial management.

The Government is targeting a reduction in the development approval process timeline from 90 to 60 days by March 2018.

Additionally, the Administration has taken steps to reduce the time taken to establish a business by facilitating an electronic registration process, Finance and Public Service Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw, has said.

These measures, he indicated, form part of the thrust to further improve Jamaica’s investment climate and competitiveness by removing impediments to the ease of doing business in order to facilitate investors.

They are among the programmed reforms for which the World Bank has provided the Second Competitiveness and Fiscal Management Programmatic Development Policy Loan (DPL) in the sum of J$9.01 billion (US$70 million) for Jamaica.

Speaking at the signing of the loan agreement with World Bank Country Manager for Jamaica, Galina Sotirova, at the Ministry’s offices in Kingston on June 28, Mr. Shaw said the loan will also support the Administration’s targeted programme of fiscal consolidation and enhanced public financial management.

He noted that this is another priority area for the Government which, he assured, remains committed to improving public efficiency, quality and cost effectiveness.

To this end, Mr. Shaw said several initiatives aimed at achieving better expenditure oversight and management through public procurement and public sector pension management reforms are being targeted.

He further said the Public Investment Management System has been established within the Finance Ministry to streamline the appraisal, approval and management of all public investments.

Mr. Shaw said the provision is welcome as it will support the Government’s undertaking to achieve and fast-track higher levels of economic growth, provide additional employment, reduce poverty levels and inequality and streamline Jamaica’s energy sources, in addition to encouraging better fiscal management and strengthening the business climate.

“The Government of Jamaica stands resolute in its commitment to this programme of reforms and welcomes the continued invaluable contribution of the World Bank. Jamaica looks forward to reaping the positive effects of the reforms on the economy and anticipates continued collaboration with the Bank in support of the Government’s overall growth objectives,” he added.

For her part, Mrs. Sotirova said the loan is the third of three DPLs totalling approximately J$34.8 billion (US$270 million), which the Bank has provided under its Country Strategy for Jamaica since 2014.

She indicated that it is a testament to the institution’s faith in Jamaica’s sustained and strong commitment to implementing a “really ambitious” reform programme “which has led to a favourable economic outlook.”

In this regard, Mrs. Sotirova anticipates that Jamaica’s economic performance will continue improving, once the Administration stays the course.

She also reaffirmed the Bank’s commitment “to be Jamaica’s long-standing partner in the implementation of an ambitious and sustained reform programme…and in bringing about prosperity and development for the Jamaican people.”

Jamaica’s last loan allocation was the J$9.7 billion (US$75 million) First Competitiveness and Fiscal Management Programmatic provision, disbursed in March 2015, and which funded the initial phase of the Government’s reform agenda.

The country has benefitted from a total of J$77.9 billion (US$605 million) in World Bank funding support for the overall reform programme.

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