Jamaica needs a national plan to secure future – Opposition Leader

People’s National Party (PNP) president and Leader of the Opposition Dr Peter Phillips says a national plan needs to be developed that will inform the reopening of the economy and the process to build a new Jamaica coming out of the COVID-19 crisis.

In a broadcast to the nation last evening (Sunday, April 26) the Opposition Leader said the health of the Jamaican people cannot be sustained without a planned re-opening of the economy that will put some of our people back at work and provide incomes for families.

This, he said, must be a strategic process to rebuild a ‘New Jamaica’ and the timetable of the re-opening of the economy must have the benefit of the best expertise in the county.

Dr Phillips said a national COVID-19 Prevention Planning and & Oversight Committee (CPOC) should be established to enable an inclusive planning approach to the coronavirus fight and strategize for the nation’s future beyond the pandemic.

He said the body, which would include private sector, health professionals from the public and private sectors, trade unions, churches and civil society, would be responsible for overseeing the distribution of benefits from the government as well as sequencing the areas and sectors to be re-started as the economy seeks to eventually reopen.

Dr Phillips stated that the key to Jamaica’s economic recovery is a modern agricultural sector which will provide both food security and the increased capacity for exports. Other critical elements of the ‘New Jamaica’ for CPOC to plan for will involve the redesign of business and operations in the public and private sectors to meet a changed world by improving ecommerce and digital agility.

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