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The Vision 2030 Jamaica Secretariat has completed work to develop the fourth Medium Term Socio-Economic Policy Framework (MTF), which underpins implementation of the country’s long-term National Development Plan.

Programme Director for the Secretariat, which is based in the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), Elizabeth Emanuel, says the document, which covers 2018 to 2021, has been reviewed by a wide range of stakeholders and will shortly be presented to Cabinet for review and approval.

The Vision 2030 Jamaica – National Development Plan seeks to position the island to attain developed country status within 12 years and, in the process, make it the place of choice to live, work, raise families and do business.

Speaking at the PIOJ’s quarterly media briefing at the Institute’s New Kingston head office on Wednesday (November  20), Mrs. Emanuel noted that the progress of Vision 2030 Jamaica’s implementation under successive three-year MTFs, between 2009 and 2018, was “mixed”.

She pointed out that while there were challenges with crime and environmental sustainability, among other issues, there were improvements in key social and economic indicators.

These, she informed, include: life expectancy at birth; the annual inflation rate; literacy rates; government effectiveness; and sustainable development planning.

The Programme Director said Jamaica recorded gains in several notable areas between 2015 and 2018.

These relate to human capital development; macroeconomic stability; a reduction in unemployment; increased use of renewable energy options; improved governance, particularly in relation to control of corruption, and government effectiveness; key economic sectors, particularly agriculture and tourism; and infrastructural development.

“Of a total of 67 indicators that were monitored against medium-term targets under Vision 2030 Jamaica, 56 per cent have shown improvement over the baseline year 2007, based on results to 2017/18, while 36 per cent showed no improvement or worsened relative to the baseline year,” Mrs. Emanuel said, while noting that no up-to-date information/data was available for the remaining eight per cent.

She advised that eight national strategic priorities have been shortlisted under the 2018-2021 MTF, in keeping with Vision 2030 Jamaica’s four Goals.

These priorities are human capital development; social protection and social inclusion; values and attitudes; rule of law and timely justice; public-sector efficiency and effectiveness; economic stability, growth and employment; international competitiveness of industry structures; and environmental sustainability and climate change response.

“These strategic priorities, along with their associated projects, programmes and activities, will assist in moving Jamaica towards a secure and prosperous future for our people,” Mrs. Emanuel said.

The National Goals aim to ensure ‘Jamaicans are Empowered’; ‘The Jamaican Society is Secure, Cohesive and Just’; ‘Jamaica’s Economy is Prosperous’; and that ‘Jamaica has a Healthy and Natural Environment’.