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Story Highlights

  • The scrap metal trade exported over 67,000 metric tonnes of metal, earning over US$19.3 million last year.
  • The regulatory framework introduced, just over a year ago, has given new life to the trade.
  • The trade in metal is beneficial to many sectors of society, such as financial institutions, shipping lines, trucking, logistics operations, and small scale operators.

The scrap metal trade exported over 67,000 metric tonnes of metal, earning over US$19.3 million last year.

This has been revealed by Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Anthony Hylton, who said the regulatory framework introduced, just over a year ago, has given new life to the trade.

Addressing the House of Representatives in the 2014/15 Sectoral Debate, on May 21, Mr. Hylton said the Ministry is proud of the work it has done to restore and regulate the Scrap Metal Industry.

He noted that the trade in metal is beneficial to many sectors of society, such as financial institutions, shipping lines, trucking, logistics operations, and small scale operators.

Mr. Hylton pointed out that the majority of export volumes going through the Kingston Container Terminal (KCT) is as a result of the trade in metals and that the sector employs about 600 persons directly and approximately 2,000 indirectly.

He informed that the trade comprises 123 registered carriers, who transport the metal to the sites; 125 dealers, 19 general exporters and four industrial exporters.

The Minister noted that there are challenges, including recent reports of property theft from homes in the Washington Gardens area of Kingston and elsewhere.

He pointed out however, that not all stolen metal is destined for, or has entered the external trade being regulated by the Factories Corporation of Jamaica (FCJ).

“We are aware of a still thriving trade in domestically generated products from scrap metals, such as the pots and pans subsector,” the Minister said.

He informed that last year, four persons were incarcerated under the new regime for breaches of the scrap metal regulations.

He commended Factories Corporation and their stakeholders – Customs, the Trade Board and the Police – for transforming the scrap metal export business into one that supports a logistics-centred economy.