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JIS News

The Developer’s and Investment Manual, which provides information about the rules and regulations for development as well as the agencies involved in the process, was launched on November 8 at Jamaica House.
It is a collaborative effort between the Government of Jamaica, the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce and the United States Agency for International Development, and falls under the purview of the Regulations, Legislation and Process Improvement Project. The document, which has been in the works since the 1960s, is designed to provide developers, builders, other professional groups as well as interested parties with a general overview of the administration, legislation, regulations and requirements for development as well as the government agencies involved in the developmental process in Jamaica. The manual, which was launched by Development Minister, Dr. Paul Robertson, is intended to be a user’s guide to applicants wishing to submit applications and for persons wishing to carry out any type of development in Jamaica. It consists of seven volumes covering areas such as Planning and Development; Environment; Infrastructure, Utilities and Communication; Hospitality Industry and Security; Social Infrastructure; Business Facilitation and Finance.
“The manual is a much larger document than originally intended and it has been prepared so that it can be put out as a hardcopy, in a loose leaf format, and it will also be in digital format,” said Jacqueline daCosta, Consultant in the Cabinet Office.
“Individual agencies will also be selling or giving their sections of the manual to the public because very few people will want the entire document,” she said.
Mrs. daCosta explained that only parts of the seven-volume document were now available, with the other sections to be ready within a month. “Hopefully, by the end of the year all the parts will be available and will be able to be published,” she said.
Government agencies and institutions worked to put the manual together as many did not have a manual. The agencies placed all the information available in a structured format, which would be beneficial to anyone new coming into that organization and this would aid them as they become familiar with the agency’s procedures and requirements.
Speaking with JIS News, Reynold Scott, Chairman of the Development Association, congratulated the Ministry for completing the manual within a reasonable time and very efficiently.
“What the manual will do for Jamaica is to help developers, architects, engineers, families and so on, to use the regulations as documented to achieve efficient developments,” he noted.
Giving her view of the manual to JIS News, Patricia Francis, President of JAMPRO said, “I think the launch of the manual is a critical first step because one of the challenges we face talking to the private sector on a day-to-day basis is some consistency and transparency in the processes of development or for any kind of business approval.”
Continuing, she noted that, “at the end of the day, for the small businessman, having access to this kind of information is what empowers him. Once we can get transparency, clear rules and regulations, then it is much simpler for people to abide by those rules and it is much simpler to generate economic development,” she said.