KINGSTON — President of the Jamaica Exporters' Association (JEA), Vitus Evans, is lauding the measures by the Government to stabilize the economy, noting that they will serve to boost productivity and economic growth.
"We welcome the reduction in interest rates, the stabilisation of the exchange rate and the firm grip on inflation," he stated at the organisation’s 45th Anniversary Annual General Meeting held on November 24 at the Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston.
Mr. Evans also commended efforts in crime prevention and reduction and called on all “law abiding citizens” to commit “to supporting the efforts of the security forces."
The JEA President, in response to an appeal by Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Dr. Christopher Tufton, called on members to ensure that their operations are in full compliance with international safety and quality standards.
He reported that the organisation has been working with the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) and other stakeholders to ensure compliance with required standards for export and local consumption. Some 228 farmers in Manchester and St. Elizabeth recently received training in business planning, marketing and record keeping.He said further that efforts continue to improve the competitiveness of exporters, and protect brand Jamaica internationally.
"Through funding by the IDB (Inter-American Development Bank) and the Multilateral Investment Fund, the JEA and the Competitiveness Company have registered and provided collective marks for Jamaican products. Some of these collective and certification marks have already been registered in the United States, Canada and the European Union,” he informed.
Mr. Evans, in the meantime, said that exporters continue to benefit under the JEA's non-collateralized lending programme, now in operation for some 10 years.
“Exporters, who have utilised our loan scheme, have indicated that it has enabled them to meet their export orders and grow their businesses. Through this facility, companies may access loans of up to $2 million for a maximum period of 540 days,” he informed.
By Garfield L. Angus, JIS Reporter