Business Reforms Trigger Investment Boom

Photo: Yhomo Hutchinson Industry, Investment, and Commerce Minister, Hon. Anthony Hylton (left), emphasises a point, while addressing the Jamaica Business Development Corporation’s (JBDC) Business Dialogue Forum, at the University of the West Indies (UWI) regional headquarters, Mona, St. Andrew, on Monday, November 16. The forum formed part of the JBDC’s activities marking Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW), from November 16 to 21, under the theme: ‘Going for Growth’. Also participating were: financial analyst, Ralston Hyman (centre); and the Scotiabank Group’s Vice President in charge of Government Affairs, Dr. Wayne Henry.

Story Highlights

  • Industry, Investment and Commerce Minister, Hon. Anthony Hylton, has hailed the success of the business reform programme, which has made it easier to do business in Jamaica.
  • He noted that the reform measures have facilitated investments which, he said, “are coming in, in significant numbers.”
  • The reform programme, being undertaken across Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), is being spearheaded by the National Competitiveness Council (NCC), which the Minister chairs.

Industry, Investment and Commerce Minister, Hon. Anthony Hylton, has hailed the success of the business reform programme, which has made it easier to do business in Jamaica.

He noted that the reform measures have facilitated investments which, he said, “are coming in, in significant numbers.”

“The Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector is booming…we will soon become the liquefied natural gas (LNG) hub for the Caribbean…and tourism investments are on the rise,” he pointed out.

Additionally, he noted that many local companies are also investing “in varying degrees,” among them Kingston Wharves Limited (KWL), Lasco Distributors, Unicomer/Courts and Island Grill.

The Minister was speaking at the Jamaica Business Development Corporation’s (JBDC) Business Dialogue Forum, held at the University of the West Indies (UWI) regional headquarters, Mona, St. Andrew, on Monday, November 16.

The reform programme, being undertaken across Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), is being spearheaded by the National Competitiveness Council (NCC), which the Minister chairs.

Mr. Hylton noted that the “robust” programme, inclusive of legislative enactments and amendments and policy formulation, has resulted in significant improvement in local and global business confidence in Jamaica’s economy.

This has propelled Jamaica seven places up, to 64, in the World Bank’s 2016 Doing Business Report, which also ranks the country among the top 10 most improved economies globally.

Notable among the reforms which he highlighted are: the Omnibus Fiscal Incentives regime; Insolvency Act; Security Interest in Personal Property Act, 2013; establishment of a National Collateral Registry; the MSME and Entrepreneurship Policy; business registration streamlining incorporating the use of a single “super-form”; the Jamaica Customs Agency’s roll-out of the Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA); legislation to establish the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) regime to replace free zones; and implementation of online tax payment systems.

Mr. Hylton said he remains optimistic about Jamaica’s future. “From where I sit…I see (investments) coming…and I am excited about where things are headed.”

The forum, which was attended by a wide cross section of participants representing various sectors, formed part of the JBDC’s activities marking Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) 2015 from November 16 to 21, under the theme: ‘Going for Growth’.

JIS Social