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  • Phase two of the National Export Strategy (NES II), which seeks to further boost Jamaica’s competitiveness in the global market, is expected to be launched on June 30.
  • Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Anthony Hylton, said consultants are currently incorporating the final strategy document, which covers the period 2015-2019.
  • He was speaking at the launch of National Exporters’ Month 2015 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston on Monday (June 1).

Phase two of the National Export Strategy (NES II), which seeks to further boost Jamaica’s competitiveness in the global market, is expected to be launched on June 30.

Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Anthony Hylton, said consultants are currently incorporating the final strategy document, which covers the period 2015-2019.

“This strategy is an improvement on the previous NES 2010-2013 as it focuses on fewer, more precise and more impactful initiatives for the priority sectors and cross-cutting areas,” he said.

He was speaking at the launch of National Exporters’ Month 2015 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston on Monday (June 1).

The main goal of the strategy is to improve Jamaica’s export performance by advancing the competitiveness of firms and sectors while enhancing the environment for business and trade.

It is being developed under the leadership of the Ministry, through Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO), and involves partnership with the Jamaica Exporters’ Association (JEA) and the Trade Board, with support from the Commonwealth Secretariat.

Minister Hylton noted that the Government, through the NES and other interventions, has adopted an “export-centric approach for the economic development of our country.”

He cited for example, reforms spearheaded by the National Competitiveness Council and the Ministry, geared at making it easier for Jamaican businesses to become export-ready and to facilitate opportunities for them to access international markets.

Minister Hylton also noted initiatives underway to create an improved trade facilitation regime, and legislation to come on stream later this year for the establishment of the Special Economic Zones (SEZs).

“The SEZs will enable Jamaican businesses to provide products and services to large-scale local and international organisations operating out of the (zones). This will allow for the participation of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), thereby fostering broad-based and inclusive growth,” he informed.

The Industry Minister further pointed to amendments to the Copyright Act to strengthen protection of intellectual property, by moving the term of copyright in Jamaica from 50 to 95 years. Debate on the Bill opened in Parliament last Tuesday (May 26).

“This is part of a targeted move to create a modern intellectual property regime that includes amendments to the Trademarks Act and the ongoing accession to the Madrid Protocol, which allows international registration of trademarks registered in one country (such as Jamaica) to be protected in the territories of the up to 95 members of the World Intellectual Property Organization,” he said.

He also mentioned work by JAMPRO to provide support to the exporting community as well as aspiring exporters through a variety of capacity-building and export promotion programmes. These include the yearly workshop series: Step by Step Guide to Exporters in Montego Bay and Kingston; and the award-winning Export Max programme.

Minister Hylton also highlighted the various programmes of the Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC), and the Bureau of Standards Jamaica, which also benefit exporters.

The Minister pledged to “remain steadfast in working towards a better environment, not just for exporters, but for all Jamaican businesses.”

This year’s theme for National Exporters’ Month is: ‘Achieving Economic Growth through Excellence in Exports’.