President of the Small Business Association of Jamaica (SBAJ), Edward Chin-Mook, says that it is crucial for entrepreneurs to abide by tax regulations which stimulate economic growth.
Mr. Chin Mook said that the creation of a Jamaica Business Information Centre (JAMBIC), at the association’s headquarters in Kingston, will emphasise proper registration of entities and the importance of tariff compliance.
“We are really in this position (high debt burden) because too many of us have not paid our way for such a long time and, as a result of that, the Government and successive Governments have always been put in a precarious position,” he said.
Chief Executive Officer of the Jamaica Business Development Corporation, Valerie Veira, (left) and President of the Small Business Association of Jamaica (SBAJ), Edward Chin-Mook, cut a ribbon, symbolisng the opening of a Jamaica Business Information Centre at the SBAJ Office on Trafalgar Road, New Kingston, Tuesday( April 28).
Mr. Chin-Mook was speaking at the opening of the SBAJ’s JAMBIC Centre at 2 Trafalgar Road today (April 28).
He said that among the varied assistance to be provided, such as business plan development, the JAMBIC Centre will focus on assisting persons to enter the tax system in a controlled way.
The Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC), an agency of the Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce, launched the JAMBIC project in 2006, with a view to bolstering the support provided to owners of Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs). A strategic partnership was formed with the SBAJ, bringing to fruition the launch of a JAMBIC Centre at the association’s headquarters.
Chief Executive Officer of the JBDC, Valerie Veira, likened the partnership between the two entities to that of a “marriage”, noting that the three Ps – planning, perseverance and passion – were vital to the formation of the Centre.
“We share a common goal, to provide support and guidance to the micro, small and medium enterprises: Holding the hands of those persons who want to go on that journey of entrepreneurship,” Miss Veira said.
Executive Director of JBDC Harold Davis, provided statistics on the number of non-Government businesses in Jamaica saying that, according to the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), there were some 365,000 entities registered as own account.
Mr. Davis also gave a brief outline of the operations of the JAMBIC at the SBAJ, explaining that plans were being made to offer specialised services for the visually impaired and the physically challenged.
“We are hoping that it will become a special place for MSMEs in New Kingston,” he said.
Aside from the newly-opened centre, Mr. Davis announced that three others will be established within the next two months in Manchester, St. Ann and Portland.
Thus far seven JAMBIC Centres have been opened and are operating at: the JBDC’s Corporate Office; Jamaica Employer’s Federation; The Source JN; Hanover Chamber of Commerce; Negril Chamber of Commerce; Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce; and Portmore Chamber of Commerce.
The JAMBIC Centres are strategically housed on the properties of some of JBDC’s partners. Partners offer at least the core suite of services, which include general business information, business development training, customised training packages, business planning services and back office support to MSMEs.
The JAMBIC Centres are a further extension of the Export Centre and Business Information Points (ECBIPs) which are components of the European Union’s Private Sector Development Programme.