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Prime Minister P.J. Patterson on August 12 told an audience of “Jamerican” entrepreneurs that the national economy was growing as a result of the combined efforts and patriotic commitment of Jamaicans at home and abroad.
Mr. Patterson was addressing a luncheon of successful Jamaican entrepreneurs and franchisees, which was hosted by Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States, Professor Gordon Shirley, at the Golden Krust Corporation and Ruder Finn Advertising Agency at the University Club in midtown Manhattan.
“The fact that your patriotic commitment can be combined with successful entrepreneurial endeavours that contribute to our country’s economic growth is ‘sweet’,” he told the gathering.
According to the Prime Minister, the economic fundamentals dealing with budget deficit, domestic interest rates, balance of payments and foreign reserves, had all shown solid improvements in recent times, despite severe disruptions due to droughts, floods, hurricanes and the rising cost of energy, which he said was “another major challenge which we must now confront”.
Mr. Patterson who praised the Hawthorne Family and the Golden Krust Corporation on the eve of their celebration of their milestone achievement of the 100th franchise store opening in New York City (NYC), also recognised Harold Doley of the New York Stock Exchange and Horatio Sparks, Deputy Comptroller, NYC for their deep commitment and enthusiastic support of Jamaica’s economic future.
Speaking against the background of the nation’s 43rd Anniversary of Independence, the Mr. Patterson said that he was looking forward to “more of this unique and special partnership between Jamaicans at home and abroad”.
“May our 43rd Anniversary of Independence mark the forging of a new partnership between the corporate interest of Jamaicans at home and Jamaicans abroad to build a brighter future for us all,” he stated.Golden Krust Corporation CEO Lowell Hawthorne presented the Prime Minister with a token for his steadfast support of the company over the years.
Mr. Patterson’s delegation included President of the Jamaica Agricultural Society, Senator Norman Grant (JAS), President of the Jamaica Manufacturer’s Association (JMA), Doreen Frankson (JMA), Consul General, Dr. Basil K. Bryan, and Ambassador Gordon Shirley, who served as master of ceremonies.
Mr. Patterson the island on Thursday (August 11) for an official visit to New York to participate in a number of activities to mark Jamaica’s independence and is expected to update the business owners on the social and economic developments in Jamaica especially in the areas of tourism and bauxite. Mr. Patterson will also explore with them business and investment opportunities in the tourism and manufacturing sectors. He is also scheduled to meet with representatives of the Jamaica Diaspora in the tri-state area. He is scheduled to return to the island on Wednesday, August 17.