Trade Facilitation has been defined as a comprehensive and integrated approach to reducing the complexity and cost of the trade transaction process, and ensuring that all these activities can take place in an efficient, transparent and predictable manner, based on internationally accepted norms, standards and best practices. The Government of Jamaica recognizes that a modernized trade facilitation regime is critical if countries like Jamaica are to benefit from the new arrangements in global production and remain competitive and open to international investment. The GoJ has, therefore, committed significant efforts towards trade facilitation in a bid to improve the country’s efficiency and competitiveness.
In 2013, the Government of Jamaica was amongst 160 countries from around the world who agreed to accept the “Bali Pakage/Agreement”. The centrepiece of the package is, without doubt, a new agreement on trade facilitation aimed at reducing red tape, and facilitating customs procedures in an effort to cut down the cost of doing business. The Agreement will “clarify and improve relevant aspects of Articles V, VIII and X of the General Agreements on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)” in order to:
In support of an improved trade facilitation regime, a national Trade Facilitation Task Force (TF2) was established to oversee implementation of the Agreement. The Trade Board Limited is the lead implementing agency in the Ministry.
To date, there has been a review of the business processes at the main ports of entry and exit; progress towards the development of a Single Trade Electronic Window interface of customs, port and other trade stakeholder agencies.
In June 2015, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between Ministers, Permanent Secretaries and other representatives of eight Ministries to facilitate coordination of efforts, signaling a strong commitment to effective, transparent, consistent and predictable procedures at Jamaica’s borders, aimed at reducing transaction costs and improving the national trading environment.
As the "business" Ministry, we are the key driver and thought leader for facilitating investments in the economy and preparing local businesses and entreprenuers to take advantage of Jamaica's entry into the global supply chain.
We have, therefore, placed much energy and enthusiam into the development of this website to provide timely information on the Ministry, our agencies and programmes.