Advertisement
JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. the Hon. Peter Phillips, says the Government will be pushing for even greater levels of economic growth in 2015.
  • The current account of the balance of payments continues to improve, so too the holdings of foreign reserves, with the Net International Reserves (NIR) standing at over just over US$2.0 billion.
  • The Finance Minister pointed out that international financiers have been paying close attention to the positive developments in the economy and have been giving solid support.

Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. the Hon. Peter Phillips, says the Government will be pushing for even greater levels of economic growth in 2015.

“Last year, for the calendar year, we had about 0.2 per cent of growth…this year, the level of growth is about five times that. We want to ensure that next year, we can speak to an increase of the same magnitude or pretty close to it,” he stated.

Dr. Phillips was speaking to JIS News following a tour of the Courtyard Marriott Hotel in New Kingston on Thursday (December 18), with President of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Luis Alberto Moreno.

He said the economy is heading in the right direction, with a number of developments that are creating conditions for economic success.

The current account of the balance of payments continues to improve, so too the holdings of foreign reserves, with the Net International Reserves (NIR) standing at over just over US$2.0 billion.

In addition, unemployment has declined, and there have been significant investments in sectors such as tourism and business processing and outsourcing (BPO) with the establishment of centres in various parish capitals across the country.

The country’s business ranking and credit rating have also improved, reflected in a highly successful return to the international bond market in July, where US$800 million was raised.

The Finance Minister pointed out that international financiers have been paying close attention to the positive developments in the economy and have been giving solid support.

“The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have been providing approximately $2 billion to support the economic reform programme and our budget… so they are giving a considerable amount of budgetary support,” he said.

He noted that the IDB’s investment support, in the building of the Courtyard Marriott, implementation of the Citizens Security and Justice Programme (CSJP), and the commitment to building new offices in Jamaica, signal the return of confidence by the international investment community.

It was a point that the IDB President endorsed, stating that the bank firmly believes in Jamaica and the direction in which is it headed, as seen in its investment of US$1.3 billion in the country.

Meanwhile, Ambassador Richard Bernal, who is Jamaica’s representative on the board of the IDB, noted that the Courtyard Marriott hotel is very important for Jamaica and the board is “very pleased” with its progress.

“It is a good project for the President to view to see the kind of contribution the bank is making to Jamaica’s economic development,” he stated.

The Courtyard Marriott is being developed by a group of local investors through support from the IDB. It is being constructed at a cost $1.75 billion and is expected to provide employment for approximately 430 Jamaicans.

 

Skip to content