Thursday, March 16, 2017

Jamaica getting well-tuned

Excerpt from Observer column published 20 FEB 2017
by Jean Lowrie-Chin

Garfene Grandison posted a query in social media about the heavy traffic in the Corporate Area since the beginning of the year.  My response was that I was hearing and seeing growing interest in Jamaica.  The latest Don Anderson Business Confidence Survey indicates a positive outlook from businesses and high expectations from consumers.  

Bank of Jamaica Governor Brian Wynter
We are able to track the facts and figures on national development via regular reports from The Economic Growth Council, The Economic Programme Oversight Committee and The Public Sector Transformation Oversight Committee. Only last week, Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) Governor Brian Wynter announced that Jamaica is one of the first countries in the world, and the first in the Caribbean which will have an IMF-approved National Summary Data Page (NSDP).

A Business Observer report quoted the BOJ Governor: “This display of greater transparency and accountability, this structured effort, is itself of great interest to international rating agencies and others, and will contribute to better credit ratings for the country.”

The Jamaican stock market has been on a bull run since the start of the year, and the BPO sector is expanding rapidly.  Let us never forget those matriarchs and patriarchs who have set us on this dynamic trajectory, including such legends as Chris Blackwell, Hyacinth Chen, Glen Christian, Oliver Clarke, Karl Hendrickson, Audrey Hinchcliffe, Dennis Lalor, Lorna Myers, Peter McConnell, Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart, the late greats Carlton Alexander, Gladstone Chang, Joan Duncan, Maurice Facey, Rose Leon, Fred Kennedy, Paco Kennedy and Saleem Mahfood.  If we start calling the names of their younger family members and the new stars of enterprise, this column would run out of space. Suffice it to say that an energetic generation of entrepreneurs is making its mark.

Let us study these successful journeys to plan our own path to prosperity.  Stay tuned to business news and read those financial supplements carefully. The Jamaica Stock Exchange website has links to all the listed companies. Never has information been so accessible.  

Now that we are opening this new path of data-powered strategy and transparency, the risk of being damaged by corrupt practices has been minimized.  It is an excellent time to venture out, using your education and talents to create opportunities for yourself and others.

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