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Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade (MFAFT) and Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries (MICAF) jointly launched the National Foreign Trade Policy and Consultancy for Jamaica’s National Trade Information Portal Project to improve ease of doing business in Jamaica.

The Foreign Trade Policy will provide a blueprint for Jamaica’s trading relationship with the world and better enable the business community by providing a one-stop shop to get information on import-export regulations and procedures. This Policy will also seek to facilitate the maintenance and development of rules providing predictability and security for firms engaged in trade and complements trade-related domestic policies and reforms.

“As a small, open and vulnerable developing economy that is highly dependent on trade, Jamaica recognised a need to strengthen the role that trade plays in economic development. Trade is vitally important to Jamaica’s growth agenda and it is estimated that nearly 90% of our GDP is attributable

to trade. The National Foreign Trade Policy and the National Trade Portal are therefore closely intertwined. The National Trade Portal and its direct linkages to the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement is well situated within the broader framework of the National Foreign Trade Policy” said Senator the Honourable Kamina Johnson Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade (MFAFT).

Johnson Smith further noted that, “If Jamaica is to be competitive in regional and international markets, and to achieve consistent, sustainable and inclusive growth and development, the country must: enhance productivity; substantially expand investment; transform its productive capacity and the quality of goods and services; and take steps to expand opportunities for the export of goods and services. To realize these objectives, a robust and dynamic foreign trade policy must be accompanied by on-going domestic reforms.”

Jamaica’s National Trade Information Portal scheduled to go live in mid-2019, is expected to help improve the predictability and transparency of the country’s business environment and will provide foreign and domestic investors with quick and timely access to trade rules and regulations. The portal will house all laws, regulations, procedures and other measures affecting trade procedures.

“With the Jamaica Trade Information Portal, we hope that our business community and other stakeholders will be provided with a useful tool to find the information necessary to facilitate their import-export activities. We are committed to closely coordinate with the public and private sector as well as international organizations to ensure sustainability of the Jamaica Trade Information Portal – the first of its kind in the Caribbean” said The Hon.Audley Shaw, Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries (MICAF).

The launch took place on Thursday, September 4, at the Pegasus hotel in Kingston.