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  • Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Audley Shaw, says Jamaica is uniquely positioned as one of the best places in the Caribbean and Latin America in which to do business.
  • Mr. Shaw informed that the Doing Business 2017 report positions Jamaica now as the second-highest ranked economy in the Caribbean, and seventh in Latin America and the Caribbean in terms of the ease of doing business.
  • Mr. Shaw noted that while these are significant achievements, there is still more work to be done in creating a strong economic base and a business environment that is conducive to attracting investments.

Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Audley Shaw, says Jamaica is uniquely positioned as one of the best places in the Caribbean and Latin America in which to do business.

Mr. Shaw argues that this has been bolstered by the establishment of a Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, and also the Economic Growth Council which outlines the Government’s commitment to growth and capturing the attention of foreign investors.

The Minister was speaking at LatinFinance’s 2nd Caribbean Finance and Investment Forum on November 17 at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, St. James.

Mr. Shaw informed that the Doing Business 2017 report positions Jamaica now as the second-highest ranked economy in the Caribbean, and seventh in Latin America and the Caribbean in terms of the ease of doing business.

“In the 2015-2016 Global Competitiveness Report, a yearly publication by the World Economic Forum, Jamaica maintained its overall competitiveness but improved its performance on procedures to starting a business, ranking third globally,” he added.

Mr. Shaw noted that while these are significant achievements, there is still more work to be done in creating a strong economic base and a business environment that is conducive to attracting investments.

“This Government recognises that for us to achieve our growth targets, it cannot be business as usual. We are committed to a robust economic growth programme, which is evidenced by bold initiatives visioned by the Prime Minister such as the establishment of a Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation and also the Economic Growth Council,” he said.

The Minister pointed out that the initiatives are geared at forward-looking strategies aimed at achieving significant economic growth and job creation over the next four years.

Mr. Shaw said the Government has implemented and is still implementing fiscal policies and structural reforms to facilitate a friendly business environment.

“When we make it easier to do business, we increase our chances of attracting investors to build Jamaica,” he added.

“Some of our efforts are already paying off, as the country recorded growth of 2.2 per cent for the July to September quarter – the highest quarterly growth recorded since the April to June quarter of 2007,” the Minister noted.

Mr. Shaw further informed that business confidence continues to improve, as investors feel confident that the programmes being implemented by the Government will bring sustained economic growth.

The Minister argued that the Government’s message of “growth to prosperity” is no longer being seen as a political slogan, but has evolved into a motivational tool right across the region.

“It is now considered a road map for developing nations. It is the essence of good governance and speaks to a message of hope. We are very proud here in Jamaica of the economic reforms we have been undertaking,” he said.

LatinFinance is the leading source of intelligence on the financial markets and economies of Latin America and the Caribbean and has covered banking and capital markets in the region for more than 25 years.