State Minister for Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Hon. Arnaldo Brown, says Jamaica can use urban regeneration as a tool to boost the local economy, as it seeks ways to improve its current economic situation.
The State Minister was addressing the ‘Eisenhower Day of Fellowship’ luncheon on October 12, 2012, at the Wyndham Hotel in New Kingston.
He noted that Jamaica has already begun to reap the benefits of international partnerships in its efforts to enhance the development of commercial environments and urban communities.
“The redevelopment of downtown Kingston as Jamaica’s business hub, and the continued development of areas such as the Portmore community, serve as prime examples of how quality leadership, global partnerships and opportunities…combine to enhance national development,” Mr. Brown said.
He further added that Jamaica’s leaders at all levels must continue to invest in this process, “identifying key local strengths which can also be incorporated into the urban planning process.”
The Minister expressed the government’s support and appreciation for the contribution of the Eisenhower Fellowship group to Jamaica’s development over the years, noting that Eisenhower fellows from the island cover a wide range of disciplines from economics to agriculture and business.
Special guest for the luncheon was Eisenhower Fellow and Chairman of the global firm PM Holdings, Dan Flinter, who spoke on ‘Economic Development Strategy with Focus On Job Creation’.
Mr. Flinter, who is Irish, is an experienced businessman with an extended career in implementing economic development strategies in Ireland.
He recounted that the key to creating employment was Ireland’s huge capacity to export, which had a ripple effect, thereby transforming the economy.
Mr. Flinter spoke to the development of an International Financial Centre which attracted some large international companies to have their base in Ireland, and outlined the different steps taken to make the project happen.
The programme was chaired by 1995 Eisenhower Fellow and Executive Director of the Kingston Restoration Company, Morin Seymour, who noted that since 1953 Eisenhower Fellowships have identified over 1,600 men and women, who are now in positions of national and regional leadership and provided them with opportunities for professional, intellectual or personal growth. He noted that for over 43 years, Eisenhower Fellows have served Jamaica in the highest positions.
The luncheon also saw representation from a wide cross-section of society, with remarks from President of the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce, Francis Kennedy; representative of the US Embassy, Alexander Martschenko and 2000 Eisenhower fellow, Sandra Glasgow.