Jamaica looks to strengthen relations with Africa

Prime Minister Andrew Holness yesterday said there are significant opportunities for lucrative trade, investment and tourism links between Africa and the Caribbean, arguing that connectivity is the greatest link between the region and the continent.

In his remarks during the Africa Day webinar, Holness highlighted major agreements signed between the Republic of South Africa and Jamaica, among them direct flights from Nigeria to Kingston. Other flight arrangements are being pursued, a release from the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) stated.

“It is envisioned that this will create more powerful engagement, and exchange of a range of goods and services between the continent and its sixth region,” the OPM added.

Additionally, the Government of Jamaica recently appointed its first ambassador/special envoy for investment to Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa and Togo.

Holness said the Government has been actively pursuing trade and investment routes that support our business opportunities.

“We are preparing to unleash new strategies for travel, trade, and investment, anchored in the will of our people to unite. There is the need for government policies and inter-governmental arrangements to facilitate contacts between our countries to foment even higher levels of trade and investment with economic returns to our people. This will require us to define the goods and services for which we are globally competitive, and redirect our investment and trade arrangements to include Africa and its diaspora,” the release quotes Holness.

The prime minister also said Jamaica is on a path to promote itself as a hub for trade relations and investment arrangement between Africa, the Caribbean, and the Americas. He noted that activating the African Diaspora of the Caribbean and the Americas, as the sixth region of the African Union, is imperative at this time.

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