Co-chairs for the newly established Economic Growth Team (EGT) Butch Hendrickson and Minister Floyd Green have outlined, as top priority, the implementation of strategies to increase the contribution made by manufacturing and export to the Jamaican economy.
According to the Team, it will be fast tracking the manufacturing growth strategy which will guide the expansion of the manufacturing sector, and so, the strategy will be brought before cabinet for approval in the next few weeks.
Minister Green says the Madrid Protocol which is an international system for obtaining trademark protection for the country, using a single application, is one of the first orders of business. “It is the global standard for protecting our products in export markets and it is the type of brand management we need to help increase our export development practices.What this will do is, see to it that Jamaican goods are protected against unfair competition,” says Green.
The EGT is jointly chaired by a representative of the private sector and the Jamaican government to ensure that there is strong leadership and accountability in the drive to fast track export growth initiatives. The membership comprises of positions within government Ministries, Departments and Agencies and leaders in the private sector. This is inclusive of: President of JAMPRO, Diane Edwards, President of the Jamaica Manufacturers and Exporters Association (JMEA), Richard Pandohie, and representative from the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), Barrington Hibbert.
In the Inaugural Meeting of the Export Growth Team (EGT) onJanuary 29th at the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture, and Fisheries Mr. Hendrickson said, “My main interest here is not just identifying strategic interventions and speaking on them, but ensuring actions are taken in the shortest possible time. We must expand our exports and drive the growth of our Gross Domestic Product.”
The EGT will also be championing the reduction of export-related costs.