Jamaicans abroad urged to take advantage of local business opportunities

Prime Minister Andrew Holness (right), in discussion with (from left) Chairman, Jamaica 55 Diaspora Conference, Earl Jarrett; Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Kamina Johnson Smith; and Leader of the Opposition, Dr Peter Phillips.

KINGSTON, Jamaica – Prime Minister Andrew Holness, is encouraging the Jamaican Diaspora to increase its involvement in the business prospects of Jamaica as a means of strengthening its relationship with the country.

He noted that there are business opportunities in logistics, Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), nutraceuticals and agriculture.

These and other possible areas for engagement are to be highlighted during a special growth forum to be held as part of the Jamaica 55 Diaspora Conference, which kicked off with an opening ceremony at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston on Sunday.

“I implore the Diaspora to take full advantage of the opportunities that will be presented at the Diaspora conference, so that there will be concrete plans and opportunities for future engagement,” Holness said at the ceremony.

To facilitate increased involvement, the prime minister said one of the Government’s principal objectives is to make it easier for prospective investors, including the Diaspora, to conduct business in and with Jamaica.

“Our aim is to streamline the work of critical agencies and procedures to avoid duplication, thereby creating a more favourable business environment,” he noted.

The prime minister stressed that the Government is serious about strengthening the relationship between the Diaspora and Jamaica in every aspect, adding that the conference provides a “springboard” to facilitate this.

“This administration pledges to continue facilitating…your involvement in every facet of the country’s socio-economic development. We are pleased to see that the engagement process has evolved over the 13 years of philanthropy to one where the Diaspora is now fully on board,” he said.

Holness added that the country appreciates the significant contributions the Diaspora continues to make to communities, schools and health facilities across the island.

“The Government is cognisant of the fact that you, our Diaspora members, are amongst our best assets – sharing your skills, creativity and boundless ingenuity – and we must use this to our nation’s benefit,” he said.