JIS News

State Minister for Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Sharon Ffolkes-Abrahams, is calling for entrepreneurs to come forward and invest in the build-out of new space for the Montego Bay Free Zone.

The State Minister said the investment could be “through public-private partnerships, or otherwise."

Mrs. Ffolkes-Abrahams was making her contribution to the ongoing 2012/13 Sectoral Debate in the House, on July 18.

She described the Zone, which is located in her West Central St. James Constituency, as “one of the success stories of the West…in which there are now 14 outsourcing companies, employing over 4,500 persons."

The State Minister said that currently, the Zone enjoys 98 per cent occupancy for office space. “The provision of new space is, therefore, imperative to achieving employment growth in 2012/2013," she pointed out.

She reported that a number of new and existing companies are in the process of expanding or setting up new operations. “The only issue that we have with the Montego Bay Free Zone, is the scarcity of office space to meet the demand,” she said.

On another matter, Mrs. Ffolkes-Abrahams said the Retirement Landfill in her constituency has “enormous potential for an environmental best practise (operation) in recycling and for the production of biomass energy."

She explained that there are ongoing discussions with a firm from Canada, which has indicated a serious interest in the business prospect that this represents. “This will provide an opportunity for not only employment, but will also be beneficial to the environment,” the State Minister said. 

By Andrea Braham, JIS Reporter

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