Speech

In light of recent concerns raised in the public sphere about the issuance of work permits to workers from an overseas jurisdiction to operate as “specialist finishers” at the Moon Palace Jamaica Grande Hotel in Ocho Rios, the Ministry of Labour and Social Security advises that it administers at all times a rigorous work permit regime, with priority given to the protection of employment of Jamaican workers.

In order to meet an April 11, 2015 deadline for the opening of the Moon Palace Jamaica Grande Hotel, the Mexican Investor, Operadora, had applied for 180 work permits for “specialist finishers”. Currently, 110 “specialist finishers” are engaged on the work site. All such permits issued by the Ministry are valid for a three (3) month period only.

Given the Ministry’s support for the Government’s Growth Agenda with emphasis on the promotion of local and foreign investment for job creation, the Ministry advises that the “specialist finishers” complement the Jamaican work team of approximately 2,000 workers who are employed at various levels of the renovation exercise currently underway at the hotel.

On completion, the Moon Palace Jamaica Grande Hotel is expected to provide employment for approximately 1,200 Jamaicans.