Local manufacturers will get a chance to market their goods and services, and network with international buyers at EXPO Jamaica 2010, which will be held from June 17 to 20 at the National Arena in Kingston.
The biennial event, hailed as the Caribbean’s premiere trade show, is being staged under the theme: ‘Brand Jamaica to the World!’ and will feature more than 2,000 Jamaican products and over 200 booths.
It is being co-hosted by the Jamaica Manufacturers’ Association (JMA), Jamaica Exporters’ Association (JEA) and the Jamaica Trade and Invest (JTI).
Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Karl Samuda, addresses the media launch of Expo Jamaica 2010 at the offices of the Jamaica Manufacturers’ Association downtown Kingston today (March 16). The expo will be held from June 17-20 at the National Arena under the theme: ‘Brand Jamaica to the World’.
At the media launch held today (March 16) at the JMA’s office downtown Kingston, Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Karl Samuda, commended the organisers of the trade show, noting that it provides the opportunity to showcase the best of Jamaica’s manufacturing sector to the word.
Pledging the Ministry’s full support for the event, he said that in carving out a niche for Jamaican products in the international marketplace, there needs to be one cohesive and recognisable Jamaican brand.
In the meantime, he pointed to the need for the manufacturing sector to be modernised with a focus on increased scientific research.
He stated that the Ministry will be strengthening efforts in this area, with expanded responsibilities for the Scientific Research Council to drive innovation.
Marketing and Energy Services Manager at the Jamaica Public Service Company, Jacky Simmonds (left), presents a sponsorship cheque to cover the cost of electricity for Expo Jamaica 2010, to Treasurer of the Jamaica Manufacturers’ Association (JMA), Jodie Summerbell, at the media launch of the expo at the JMA’s offices in Kingston today (March 16). The expo will be held from June 17-20 at the National Arena under the theme: ‘Brand Jamaica to the World’.
He noted however that even with innovation, there needs to be visionary entrepreneurs willing to take on a good idea and start from scratch.
Also important, the Minister said, is forming linkages with international partners. “There are some who speak about manufacturing in glowing terms of the past; well the past is the past. The way forward is to use all the strategies that have been proven around the world and to partner with successful countries that have operated efficiently by utilising the whole global economy as part of their developmental strategy,” he declared.
President of the JMA, Omar Azan, in his remarks, noted that the upcoming expo is a “celebration of the best of Jamaica, and comes at a time when the world has been reeling from the economic recession and manufacturers and exporters have not gone unscathed”.
He disclosed that the sector, which comprises only 29.7 per cent of the economy, has been performing far below its targets and that its growth potential has been largely untapped. Mr. Azan bemoaned the fact that Jamaica spends approximately $5.7 billion per week on imports and said that Jamaica must start seeking economic independence through production.
“The picture is clear that opportunities in manufacturing abound, if we have the right approach and commitment in getting production moving at a faster pace. The future of manufacturing is bright because the sector is resilient as it competes on the local and international stage against a tough external and internal environment,” he stated.
EXPO Jamaica 2010 will feature several products ranging from art and craft and fashion to information communication technology and packaging and labeling.
There will be a special opening and buyers’ reception on June 17, starting at
5:00 p.m., with the event being open to the public on June 18 from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. and June 19 and 20 from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.