JIS News

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  • Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. Omar Davies has emphasized that the government was totally committed to the future of Air Jamaica, as it was playing a critical role in the overall development of the country's tourism product and the national economy.
  • The government of Jamaica has been, by far, the major financial supporter of Air Jamaica, both in its period as the state airline and since it has been privatized.
  • Over and beyond our 25 per cent share-holding, we have been the major financial supporter of the airline.

Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. Omar Davies has emphasized that the government was totally committed to the future of Air Jamaica, as it was playing a critical role in the overall development of the country’s tourism product and the national economy.

“The government of Jamaica has been, by far, the major financial supporter of Air Jamaica, both in its period as the state airline and since it has been privatized. Over and beyond our 25 per cent share-holding, we have been the major financial supporter of the airline. We have done this because of our conviction that it was critical to the country’s economic prosperity,” Dr. Davies said.

The Minister was speaking at a press conference after addressing the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s luncheon at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Montego Bay on October 28.

Dr. Davies noted that the Air Jamaica Acquisition Group, headed by Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart, has been making a sterling contribution to the country and has shown satisfactory recovery efforts, even after the devastation caused by Hurricane Ivan on September 10.

Turning to another issue, Dr. Davies said that due to the devastation suffered by other states, such as Grenada and Haiti, and the fact that Jamaica has been seen as a middle income country, the recovery effort would have to be financed mainly from the country’s own financial resources.

“To the extent that we have received any grant financing, and to the extent that we have received any private sector contributions, this programme of recovery will be accomplished from some re-allocations from existing programmes,” the Minister said.

Dr. Davies said that many persons have expressed surprise at the rate of recovery in the various sectors, such as tourism, bauxite and manufacturing, which have all recovered perhaps more quickly than persons would have anticipated.

The Minister said that inflation for September was a positive surprise, and that the response of persons to the Jamaican bonds signalled confidence in the macro-economic programmes.

Dr. Davies pointed out that all investments that had been previously announced, were on track.

“We are also confidently expecting some additional indications of intention to invest in the country within the next few months,” the Minister said.