JIS News

Executive Director of the Jamaica Employer’s Federation (JEF), Jacqueline Coke-Lloyd, has challenged the international community to re-examine its role in influencing the creation of financing for enterprise development.
Mrs. Coke-Lloyd, who was speaking on the role of enterprise development in promoting decent work, at a meeting of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) at the United Nations headquarters in New York recently, said that the need for enterprise development was most apparent in developing countries, which had persistently high levels of unemployment and underemployment.
She pointed out however, that too often, there were hindrances to the establishment of enterprises for a number of reasons, ranging from lack of affordable financing, inflexible labour market policies, onerous registration processes, globalization, outward migration and high state taxation.
According to Ms. Coke-Lloyd, enterprises must be created within the context of freedom, equity, security and human dignity. “This suggests that decent work (must) extend beyond the bounds of the workplace into the arena of politics and societal norms. The implication here is that decent work that considers these factors is as much an objective to be attained by good business practices, as it is a matter for society and state to facilitate,” she stated.
She told the meeting that one of the best ways to promote decent work was to invest in people, indigenous skills and competences, and facilitate an enabling environment for entrepreneurs and small enterprises. “The size of these enterprises may involve an entire community, a small group of workers or a single individual, all having the potential to employ other workers,” she pointed out.
The JEF’s Executive Director further stated that, “enterprises, government and the international community need to collaborate to hasten and ensure that the issues attendant on the successful development of enterprises and their contribution to the creation of decent work, can and will be resolved”.
Citing a number of initiatives under the JEF, she mentioned the Youth Employment Network (YEN), Young Entrepreneurs Association (YEA) and the Youth Career Development Programme.
Mrs. Coke-Lloyd’s presentation preceded a round table discourse on issues that could lend support to the effective implementation of national policies to ensure full, productive employment and decent work. The discussion was chaired by Ali Hachani, Ambassador of Tunisia to the United Nations and President of ECOSOC, and subjects areas included trade, aid, investment, debt relief and technology.
Segment organizers included the International Labour Organization (ILO); United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD); United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).