The National Diaspora Policy has been approved by Cabinet, and a Plan of Action to implement the strategies identified is currently being drafted.
Details were shared by State Minister in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Leslie Campbell, during Tuesday’s (June 14) opening ceremony of the Jamaica 60 Diaspora Conference at the Ministry’s downtown Kingston headquarters and online.
He said that the June 14 to 16 conference will serve as a forum to discuss key elements of the Plan of Action.
The National Diaspora Policy reflects the commitment of the Government of Jamaica (GOJ) to pursue diaspora-related strategies and initiatives that are mutually beneficial to the national development process and the well-being of its diaspora population.
The policy provides the framework for enhancing the principle of mutuality between Jamaica and the diaspora.
It is aligned to the goals articulated in the National Development Plan, Vision 2030 Jamaica, which is aimed at creating a framework for Jamaica to achieve developed country status, as well as national priority documents such as the Medium-Term Socio-Economic Policy Framework.
Senator Campbell noted that technology will be critical in achieving the goals of the policy, as there will be need for “access to reliable, regular and updated statistics of the size, location, and demographic characteristics of diaspora members”.
As such, he said that the Ministry will be collaborating with international partners to develop a Digital Portal and Diaspora Registration Platform to collect data to facilitate evidence-based decision-making for diaspora engagement.
“A feasibility study will also be developed, in consultation with the diaspora, on a Jamaican Diaspora Engagement Model,” he added.
Discussions during the Diaspora Conference will focus on re-energising and motivating members of the diaspora to be active partners during the post-COVID-19 era and provide updates on the progress of national and socio-economic developments and actions for increased customer satisfaction in key service areas that are of critical importance.
Meanwhile, Senator Campbell emphasised that the Government remains committed to harnessing the full potential of the Jamaica diaspora.
He said it is recognised that the remittance industry needs to be formalised and modernised, and is pleased that the International Organization for Migration, will support the Government’s efforts in this regard.
Senator Campbell officially opened the ninth Biennial Jamaica Diaspora Conference, which included participation from overseas nationals, members of the diplomatic corps, the business community and government officials.