MSME and Entrepreneurship Policy to be Reviewed

Story Highlights

  • The Government will be conducting a review of the 2013 Micro, Small and Medium-size Enterprises (MSME) and Entrepreneurship Policy.
  • He further indicated that a national mentorship programme will be introduced to harness and channel the expertise of talented businessmen and businesswomen here and abroad.
  • The regulations will enable greater participation of MSMEs in public procurement.

The Government will be conducting a review of the 2013 Micro, Small and Medium-size Enterprises (MSME) and Entrepreneurship Policy.

Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Karl Samuda, said the review will be undertaken over the next three months.

Among the objectives are to update the policy, create a standard definition of MSMEs in order to improve reporting of financial statistics for the sector, and lay the foundation for the development of more tailored financial products.

“This sector is too important for us not to be able to properly characterise it and we can never hope to plan for the sector in the absence of a clear definition and information and data,” Mr. Samuda said in his contribution to the 2016/17 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on June 7.

“This is part and parcel of my Ministry’s resolve to establish national key performance indicators (KPIs) for the MSME sector to ensure consistent data reporting, measurement and monitoring,” he added.

Meanwhile, Minister Samuda informed that an initiative is under way to expand the outreach of business development services to the sector, working in partnership with parish-based institutions and through web-related products.

In addition, a national catalogue of MSME initiatives has been prepared and is going through final review. The catalogue will be available on the Ministry’s website by the end of June and it will be regularly updated. “The goal is to offer a one-stop information shop for the people of Jamaica on what is being provided to the sector across the island,” Minister Samuda informed.

He further indicated that a national mentorship programme will be introduced to harness and channel the expertise of talented businessmen and businesswomen here and abroad.

“Already, several business leaders have expressed an eagerness to mentor small businesses and young entrepreneurs,” he told the House.

Turning to the Microcredit Act, which is being piloted by the Finance and Public Service Ministry, Minister Samuda said it will bring the microfinance sector under an appropriate regulatory framework.  The legislation is expected to be passed during the fiscal year.

Meanwhile, he said that recommendations in relation to the Procurement Offset Regulations are to be submitted in July. He informed that a working group has been formed within the Ministry, which will be expanded to include the private sector.

The regulations will enable greater participation of MSMEs in public procurement.

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