The 8th Biennial Jamaica Diaspora Conference Day of Service saw the roll out of some 42 projects. While the activity has been dubbed a ‘Day of Service’ by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, many of the projects carried out were far from one off occasions. One such project was a basketball clinic held at the Excelsior Community College in Mountain View, St. Andrew and moderated by professional basketball player, turned coach, Stephan Gilling. A first generation American from California with Jamaican roots, Gilling, wanted to give back to Jamaica by sharing his passion for basketball.
The Foreign Exchange Global Code developed by the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) has been formally adopted in the Jamaican market. The Code’s adoption is one of several foreign exchange market reforms initiated by the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) in 2017. The Foreign Exchange Global Code provides a common set of guidelines for all authorised foreign exchange trading entities for promoting the integrity, transparency and effective functioning of the market, which is vital to the global financial system.
For the month of July, the National Task Force Against Trafficking in Persons undertook several activities to raise public awareness about the heinous crime of human trafficking, which mainly affects the country’s most vulnerable citizens. Manager at the Trafficking in Persons Secretariat in the Ministry of Justice, Chenee Russell, sat with JIS Studio 58A host Vaughn Davis recently to outline some of the activities being carried out by the Government and its private partners to combat the crime and bring perpetrators to justice.
Many Jamaicans in the Diaspora hold positions of prominence and use their positions to assist where needed here at home. One such individual is Mayor of Miramar, Florida in the United States, Wayne Messam. Messam is a first generation American. His parents and siblings, who were all born in Manchester, migrated to the United States many years ago in pursuit of the American dream.
The wheels have been set in motion for another Emancipendence Festival Season and government is pulling out all the stops to make every year better than the last. Festival Bandwagons and vigils have been scheduled for all parishes and the Independence Village will be teeming with activity throughout the season. But, it’s the annual Independence Grand Gala that everyone will be anticipating, with fresh new talent to be featured this year.
Converting tyres into energy, it’s a solution now being piloted by Caribbean Cement Company under a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Government to remove some 1.5 to 2 million tyres from the Riverton City disposal site. The move is aimed at reducing the risks and harmful effects on the environment from having these tyres out in the open.
The Government of Jamaica is working hard to make life better for everyone. Evidence of this can be seen all around us, through the numerous road improvement projects, efforts to strengthen the social safety net, and lower the country’s unemployment rate, which recently reached its lowest ever rate in the country’s history. In spite of this, all these gains can be undone by one major disaster, which for the Caribbean typically comes in the form of a major earthquake or hurricane. With this mind, the Government, guided by the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015 to 2030, has been putting measures in place to reduce losses that can accrue from natural disasters, particularly hurricanes.
Many persons across Jamaica have great potential but with limited resources, no job and little hope for obtaining a higher education. But the Housing, Opportunity, Production and Employment Programme, has been providing HOPE for persons. More than 24,000 youth have been successfully trained under the programme to date, all of whom have been equipped with the knowledge, skills and experience to open doors to permanent job placements.
Employment is on the rise but so too is the economy which grew by 1.7 percent in the first quarter of 2019 when compared with the same quarter of 2018.Mining and quarrying and Hotels and Restaurants came up big for the period under review. We share the numbers on today programme as we continue going for growth with the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN).
The government is focused on strengthening key areas of its operations over the next 18 months under the public sector transformation programme. The administration is addressing outdated operating processes, inadequate use of ICT, high transaction costs and times, inadequate human resource management practices and a complex compensation structure. We’ll share with you how some of those are being tackled on today’s programme.
The Government has been making steady strides in improving the ease of doing business in the country. Recent developments include, the introduction of a new online platform where persons can register a business in Jamaica from anywhere in the world. Steps are also being taken to stimulate the business environment by increasing access to funding. Measures are also being put in place to help business operators who have disagreements with each other to settle their disputes – a process known as arbitration.