Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce (MIIC) the Hon. Audley Shaw, Minister of State MIIC the Hon. Dr. Norman Dunn and the MIIC team: Mrs. Sancia Bennett-Templer, Permanent Secretary; Ms. Daenia Ashpole, Director Trade Unit; Mr. Karl Hyatt, International Trade Specialist; Ms. Sophia Wellington, Senior Director, Industry Unit, Mr. Clifford Spencer, Director, Commerce Unit; Mr. Dennis Boothe, Senior Advisor/Consultant and Ms. Rochelle Mitchell, Acting Director, PR & Communication Unit now in a virtual Courtesy Call with His Excellency TiIan Qi, Chinese Ambassador; Ms. Wang Lijun, Economic & Commercial Office, Ms. Cao Lili, Economic & Commercial Office and Mr. Fan Jianghoug, Commercial Counsellor.
On Thursday, May 20, 2021, the Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, the Hon. Audley Shaw, along with the Minister of State the Hon. Dr. Norman Dunn and the MIIC team, convened a meeting with the Chinese Ambassador, His Excellency Tian Qi, Economic and Commercial Counsellor, Mr. Fan Jianghoug and members of their Economic & Commercial Office, to discuss Economic and Investment Cooperation between the Governments of Jamaica and China.
Among other matters, Minister Shaw advanced the discussions on further cooperation between the two countries in the development of Jamaica’s Bamboo industry. The Chinese Government, through a grant of US$1.9 million, had previously demonstrated its commitment to working with the Ministry to develop the largely untapped local industry.
Speaking during the meeting Minister Shaw hailed the partnership as a key stimulus for economic growth. “We wish to expedite this partnership with China and fast track the development of our Bamboo industry led by the expertise and technical knowledge of the Chinese Government who are experts and veterans in the field of Bamboo production”, stated Shaw.
The Minister charged his Minister of State to accelerate the programme acknowledging that though there may currently be roadblocks to fully realizing the potential of the local bamboo industry, the opportunity presented now should not be lost the “It is time for action now, an opportunity missed cannot be regained; we need to start where we are with what we have and do what we can to capitalize on these opportunities”, he added.
In accepting the charge from Minister Shaw, Minister of State, the Hon. Dr. Norman Dunn contributed to the discussion saying “the MIIC is the Ministry to bridge the gap between all other Ministries and employ joined up Government strategies to fast-track projects for the development of our industries to ensure that we recover from the pandemic stronger and faster.”
The committee which will be chaired by Minister Dunn and the Permanent Secretary within the Ministry, Mrs. Sancia Bennett Templer, will focus on the development of a robust action plan and execute initiatives that will see to the full value-chain development of the local bamboo sector. This will include focused and increased production of the Jamaican variety of bamboo -bamboo vulgaris- through the creation of bamboo orchards and the production of bamboo- based products for local use and export.
The discussions also focused on the Ministry’s trade and export agenda to increase the volume and mix of Jamaican products entering the Chinese market. Opportunities for export entry and expansion were highlighted for several agricultural and manufactured goods such as conch, sea cucumber, lobster, pork, canned ackee and saltfish, Jamaican cuisine (spice and jerk infusions), Jamaican culinary expertise and spices and Jamaican rum.
Highlighting that several of Jamaica’s deep-sea foods are delicacies for which there is a veritable demand in China, the Chinese Ambassador, His Excellency Ian Qi, agreed to facilitate further exploration between the Jamaican and Chinese Governments to harness the technical expertise and knowledge available in China to catapult these untapped industries. On the part of the MIIC, the Minister agreed that the Ministry would leverage its role as the business and trade facilitation Ministry and invite the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MoAF) to partner with the MIIC to advance these discussions.
In closing, Minister Shaw pledged the support of his Ministry in hastening steps to get the development of these industries underway, as the country rebound from global economic.
For more information, please contact:
Ms. Rochelle Mitchell - Acting Director, Communication and Public Relations Unit
Tel: (876) 968-7116 | (876) 454-1177 (Mobile)
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The Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce is described as Jamaica's "Business Ministry." It's mandate is to lead the development of policies that will create growth and jobs, while achieving social inclusion and consumer protection. The Ministry, working its stakeholders is primarily responsible for business policy development, monitoring and evaluation, while giving direction and oversight to a cluster of implementing departments and agencies.
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