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6 Changes Jamaica Can Make Toward Gaining Economic Empowerment


Enact Business Friendly Regulations That Invest in The Local Economy

There is always a push for emerging markets like Jamaica to adopt more “business friendly” regulations to adopt more foreign investment. However, what often happens is that a foreign country will put up some money with no real benefit to the local economy. This is because the country with the money will use its own people to build out these projects, use up local resources and then leave when it’s done.

Allison Peart, managing and tax partner at consulting firm Ernst & Young, Jamaica, came out forcefully against the current system of tax waivers that the government has granted foreign businesses operating in Jamaica, arguing that the country is losing billions of dollars because such incentives are not tied to employment generation and production.

Example to Look at: Brazil

Brazil has made leaps and bounds as an emerging nation, and is quickly becoming an economy to be reckoned with.

The Growth Acceleration Plan is an umbrella term for thousands of infrastructure projects across the country. The program started in 2007 with an initial $4.2 billion investment. The main goal is to improve the poor infrastructure that has created a pattern of social exclusion, and thereby expand economic potential in traditionally neglected areas. The poor are more likely to live in areas with bad roads, poor public transportation, few available jobs, limited or no access to credit, and no mail or commercial delivery services. To maximize the program’s impact, the government hires the people that live in those neighborhoods to perform the work. This simultaneously creates employment in the short term in areas where unemployment is disproportionately high, while making changes that should help spur long-term economic growth.

Brazil is also quite protective of its local economy. For example, consumer electronics companies who do not set up operations in the country are subject to additional taxes on its goods. This helps to prevent foreign companies from coming into the country without investing into the local economy.

What people are saying

5 thoughts on “6 Changes Jamaica Can Make Toward Gaining Economic Empowerment

  1. Colin Johnson says:

    All well and good but there needs to be a new mindset with govt itself. 2 million stopovers what does that mean. Stopover for two minutes or overnight. Where are the stopovers. In the hotels if that's the case then there's no trickledown effect. this doesn't help the economy as said money stays in hotel chain.

  2. Jack Russell says:

    Most of the money from tourism is paid in foreign currency and is moved directly into foreign currency accounts very little except for local expenses is held in Jamaica

  3. Garth White says:…this company headed by the civil wrongs leader aided by the government of the day,headed by the then PM Pj Patterson who is now a exec with goodworksintl ,brought Mirant a under the weather US company to Ja where they bought JPS,the Jamaican power company,they did not have to do any kind of upgrades to a ailing system. They were guaranteed a 17% return on investment???in 5 years they walked out of Jamaica with $250mil US $s. This is an Atlanta company that goes into the 3rd world and with the aide of politicians,help to put the people in bondage..while the advice is good,best for you to expose these modern day black carpetbaggers,after all,they are your neighbours..

  4. Garth White says:

    Jamaicans now pay the highest cost in the world for electricity,and we know how good that is!!!

  5. The suggestions are nice however the current political (both parties) and corporate leadership will not implement them due to: (1) They are overseers for foreign interests that wish to dominate Jamaica and the "leadership" will sell out the people for less than 30 pieces of silver and (2) Sheer ignorance and incompetence.

    The people must find a way to implement most of these suggestion through: organic farmer's and producers coops, Saturday schools which include African-centered and vocational education, Community-based tourism where the community members own the bread and breakfast's as well as the transportation services, and energy cooperatives where the community pools their resources to buy solar energy equipment. These cooperatives should include both the poor and the middle-class where the equity can be built with financial contributions or labor.

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