$15.3 Million Boost for Competiveness Project


Activities under Jamaica’s Competitiveness Enhancement Programme should be significantly boosted this year through a $15.3 million provision in the 2010/11 Estimates of Expenditure, which were tabled in the House of Representatives on Thursday (March 25).
The project, being implemented by the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), aims to improve competitiveness in Jamaica through the promotion of specific reforms to reduce the cost of doing business, thereby enhancing efficiency and the ability of businesses to compete in an increasingly global marketplace.
Anticipated targets for 2010/11 include training personnel for the tax expenditure study; reducing distortions in the current tax system; simplifying tax administration; reforming the secured transactions framework; and enacting the legislative and regulatory framework for the establishment of credit bureaus.
Implemented in April 2008, the project has been extended from its March 2010 conclusion date to March 2011, to facilitate the completion of critical work.
Achievements up to December 2009 include the establishment of a Private/Public Sector/Trade Union Steering Committee on competitiveness; preparation of a tax expenditures study; and implementation of initiatives to improve taxpayer service, including easy payment facilities and outbound call centres by the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service.
The project is being funded by the Government of Jamaica.

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