‘We must be doing business at the speed of Usain Bolt,’ says PM

Prime Minister Andrew Holness has given an assurance to potential international investors that the political climate in Jamaica is friendly, and that the Government is determined to ensure that the ease of doing business here will be as speedy as legendary sprinter Usain Bolt.

“What I want to communicate to you today, as potential investors in the region, is that this Government is serious about making Jamaica the place of choice for your investment,” Holness told guests on the first day of the two-day Caribbean Hotel Investment & Operations Summit 2019 at Secrets Wild Orchid in Montego Bay, St James yesterday.

Noting that Jamaica placed 71st out of 190 countries in the Doing Business Report for 2019, Holness said while this “reflected an improvement of our ranking for the previous year by four places” the country still has “a lot of work to do”.

He also noted that the World Economic Forum ranked Jamaica 79th in the global competitiveness report for 2018 out of 140 countries. “It is not a bad ranking for a country of Jamaica’s stage of development, but it is not sufficient to promote the level of investment that we are seeking. We are not satisfied with that,” he said.

“We are presently redoubling our efforts to ensure that, just as how we have conquered the sprints, and Usain Bolt is the fastest man in history in the sprints, Jamaica must become the Usain Bolt of small developing economies when it comes to the ease of doing business and facilitation of business. We must be doing business at the speed of Usain Bolt. So we are actively working to improve those rankings,” Holness said.

He noted that political stability “is becoming high on the agenda of investors as they seek to go into emerging markets”.

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