Full Compliance with WTO Rules Soon – Hylton

Photo: Donald Delahaye Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Anthony Hylton (left), makes a point during a trade facilitation forum, held at the Terra Nova Hotel, in St. Andrew, on January 18. At right is Commissioner of Customs, Major Richard Reese.

Story Highlights

  • With the recent passage of key pieces of legislation, and more to come, Jamaica will soon be in full compliance with Word Trade Organization (WTO) rules, and move closer to becoming a financial services centre in the region.
  • The Minister said the International Financial Services Hub will be an important source of funding, and will create the vehicles for “transnational corporations” to set up operations within the SEZs.
  • He also commended the Government’s policy for the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector, citing it as a crucial move for job creation.

With the recent passage of key pieces of legislation, and more to come, Jamaica will soon be in full compliance with Word Trade Organization (WTO) rules, and move closer to becoming a financial services centre in the region.

This was noted by Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Anthony Hylton, while addressing a trade facilitation forum, held today (January 18) with Director General of the WTO, Roberto Azevedo, at the Terra Nova Hotel, in St. Andrew.

He told the  audience that Jamaica is “far advanced in meeting the requirements” for conformity with the Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures; previously identified breaches have been remedied under the Omnibus Incentive regime, and with the Special Economic Zone Act coming into effect, tangible economic benefits are on the horizon.

“Jamaica as a Global Logistics Hub, supported by Special Economic Zones (SEZs), will offer quick turnaround through ‘near shore’ value-added logistics services that will reduce the time to Latin America, and other markets in the Western Hemisphere,” Mr. Hylton added.

The Minister said the International Financial Services Hub will be an important source of funding, and will create the vehicles for “transnational corporations” to set up operations within the SEZs. He informed that debate will commence on January 19 in the House of Representatives on two related Bills for the sector.

Trade1
Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Anthony Hylton (centre), addresses trade facilitation forum at the Terra Nova Hotel, in St. Andrew, on January 18. Listening are: Director General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Roberto de Azevedo (left), and Commissioner of Customs, Major Richard Reese (right).

“With our large pool of highly qualified professionals operating in the financial services, along with our robust Information and Communications Technology (ICT)  platform, we are working to make Jamaica an International Financial Hub,” Mr. Hylton said.

He  said  the Government has laid a platform for innovation, entrepreneurship and enterprise to strive, resulting in the creation of opportunities for workforce development, knowledge transfer and economic growth.

Meanwhile, the WTO  Head said having toured the port in Kingston, reviewed reports on strides that Jamaica is making on timely business transactions, he is “very pleased” with the focus on trade facilitation in Jamaica.

“The port facilities are fantastic. I am absolutely sure that the Government has the focus that it should have. The  Special Economic Zone is something that further pushes the country into a greater integration with the international market,” he told the gathering.

He also commended the Government’s policy for the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise  (MSME) sector, citing it as a crucial move for job creation.

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