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Story Highlights

  • Jamaica has seen a surge of new businesses opening up, particularly in the small and medium-sized enterprise (SME ) sector.
  • The Jamaica Manufacturers Association (JMA) has added over 60 new members over the last couple of years, according to its newly elected President, Mr. Metry Seaga.
  • Mr. Seaga said in July the JMA, in association with the Jamaica Business Development Centre (JBDC), would be hosting a trade show at the Jamaica Pegasus to showcase the work of 80 small companies to the larger corporate sector.

Jamaica has seen a  surge of new businesses opening up, particularly in  the small and medium-sized enterprise  (SME ) sector , with the Jamaica Manufacturers Association (JMA)  adding over 60  new members over the last  couple of years, according to its newly elected President,  Mr. Metry Seaga.

Mr. Seaga was speaking in an interview with JIS News shortly after he addressed the Partnership for Jamaica Council meeting, chaired by Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, at Jamaica House, on June 25.

He told the meeting that there was a “proliferation of new businesses in Jamaica”, particularly in the micro, small and medium-sized businesses.

“We might not have been saying much about it, but contrary to the view that manufacturing is dead in Jamaica, what we are finding is that there is dynamic growth, particularly in the smaller, medium-sized companies. That’s where the growth is coming from,” Mr. Seaga told the Partnership Council, made up of representatives of the Government, private sector, trade unions and civil society.

Elaborating, Mr. Seaga said in July the JMA, in association with the Jamaica Business Development Centre (JBDC), would be hosting a trade show at the Jamaica Pegasus to showcase the work of 80 small companies to the larger corporate sector.

He said significant work was being done by the Government-appointed Tourism Linkages Council, the manufacturing sub-sector, which he chairs.

“We will bring out the companies like a GraceKennedy to say when you are thinking of buying gifts for clients, you can choose these fine chocolates and jewellery made by these small companies. We will be encouraging larger companies to buy more from these smaller manufacturers and to deepen the linkages in the economy,”   Mr.  Seaga said.

“Manufacturing is still dynamic in Jamaica. You can’t just look at big companies,” Mr. Seaga emphasized. He told the Partnership Council that there were many young, innovative entrepreneurs starting business and that they were excited about production.

“We perhaps need to be saying more about this. We have excellent infrastructural and telecommunications facilities. We have a great location.  I strongly believe in manufacturing .We can be competitive,” he told JIS News.