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JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) is partnering with the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ) for the management of the DBJ’s Voucher for Technical Assistance (VTA) programme.
  • Services under this agreement will commence in the first quarter of the 2016/17 financial year.
  • The DBJ told JIS News that since May 2014, 274 vouchers, valued at $55.2 million, have been issued to 195 businesses under the VTA programme.

The Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) is partnering with the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ) for the management of the DBJ’s Voucher for Technical Assistance (VTA) programme.

The entities recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to outline details of the arrangement, under which Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) will be able to access a variety of business support services.

Services under this agreement will commence in the first quarter of the 2016/17 financial year.

Managing Director of the DBJ, Milverton Reynolds, made the disclosure on Friday (February 12), while addressing a ceremony to launch a Corporate Governance Code developed by the PSOJ for Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) at PSOJ’s head office on Hope Road in Kingston.

The code was developed through financial support from the DBJ.

Mr. Reynolds said the services offered through the VTA programme, which was launched as a pilot in May 2014; include the preparation of financial statements, business plans, marketing and strategic plans through several private sector business development organisations.

“The vouchers also allow SMEs to access a wide range of services through the Bureau of Standards, Scientific Research Council and the Jamaica Business Development Corporation, among others,” Mr. Reynolds informed.

The PSOJ was selected to manage the approval of online voucher applications and maintain the database of services provided by the business development organisations.

The entity is also expected to monitor the businesses that have received the vouchers to find out how they have benefited.

Having an external Project Manager provides transparency, as well as allows the DBJ to focus its resources on developing other projects and products.

The DBJ told JIS News that since May 2014, 274 vouchers, valued at $55.2 million, have been issued to 195 businesses under the VTA programme.

Fifty-six of these are new enterprises, which started operations within the last two years. Support loans of $162 million and $258 million in investments were also issued under the programme.

Mr. Reynolds, in his address at the ceremony, noted that the organisation is eager to join with the PSOJ in providing other services to the business community.

“We are particularly interested in the areas of low-cost funding, collateral, business support and technical assistance, equity financing, public-private partnerships and other forms of assistance to boost the growth of the MSME community,” he said.

Mr. Reynolds expressed confidence that through public-private collaboration, options can be provided for the business class, which will drive growth in the country.

“Even though we are approaching the task from different directions, the philosophy and activities of the public sector and the private sector have one common and ultimate goal, to improve the quality of life in Jamaica,” he said.