JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Executive Director of the CMI, Dr. Fritz Pinnock, is encouraging Jamaica to use the ‘London Model’ in its approach to developing its Logistics Hub.
  • Thousands of species of reptiles, birds and other animals were relocated to nearby natural and man-made habitats in order to allow for the port’s development.
  • Dr. Pinnock argued that Jamaica does not need to be engaged in a confrontational debate over the use of Goat Island in the development of a global gateway port.

Executive Director of the Caribbean Maritime Institute (CMI), Dr. Fritz Pinnock, is encouraging Jamaica to use the ‘London Model’ in its approach to developing its Logistics Hub.

“The London Gateway is a major example for us. What London had to do was to take one of their most ecologically sensitive areas, 1,800 hectares, an old oil field with swamp lands and they had to dredge 100 kilometres or 60 miles of the River Thames. They moved over 20 million cubic feet of sediments, enough to fill 12,000 Olympic sized swimming pools. Our environmental impact is nowhere near that,” the Executive Director said.

Dr. Pinnock, who is also Chairman of the Education and Training Committee of the Jamaica Logistics Hub, was addressing the general session of the Jamaica Employers’ Federation (JEF) 32nd Annual Business and Workplace Convention, held at the Sunset Jamaica Grand Resort and Spa, in Ocho Rios, on May 10.

He said the London project saw contractors, DP World Limited, collaborating with governmental agencies, environmentalists and economists to embark on the largest environmental management, wildlife mitigation and reptile relocation project in the world. Thousands of species of reptiles, birds and other animals were relocated to nearby natural and man-made habitats in order to allow for the port’s development.

Dr. Pinnock argued that Jamaica does not need to be engaged in a confrontational debate over the use of Goat Island in the development of a global gateway port.

What is necessary, he said, is a robust, intermediary dialogue among the government, the economists and environmentalists as was done in London over the treatment of the River Thames.

The act, he said, was proof that development did not have to be at the expense of the environment.

“The gateway has re-invented and repositioned London as that hub of Europe. This is what is called for in Jamaica and I am an advocate that we can work together. That development, which is the largest logistic park in Europe, has transformed the fortunes of England. This year, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has projected that England will have the fastest growth rate in Europe. The London gateway has contributed to that,” Dr. Pinnock added.

Alluding to Jamaica’s existing transhipment facilities, the Chairman said the current site of the Kingston Container Terminal is good as it serves a purpose. “With the Caymanas (Economic Free Zone),  that transhipment facility can be expanded and developed.  “However, Jamaica also needs a global gateway port, which is where we have to look to the Goat Island facility that can now integrate into a global airport that specialises in cargo (handling),” he said.

“The concept of Transhipment is now dead…nobody is going to continue to pay the increasing cost of toll to go through the Panama Canal with empty containers, because 9 out of every 10 containers that (return from) Jamaica are empty. In other words, we have to bear the cost of the empty return in the price of the freight rate which is not sustainable. The world is now looking for gateway ports,” Dr. Pinnock emphasised.

Activities of the four-day convention and expo (May 8-11) were carried out under the theme: ‘Our agenda … growth, development, partnership for prosperity’.