Jamaica’s manufacturing sector has made an invaluable contribution to the nation’s economic and social development. Many of our local large and medium sized manufacturers have their genesis as small home-based operations that
created employment and empowerment for many.
The manufacturing sector currently employs approximately 79,000 and contributes 8.6% to GDP. The link between manufacturing and job creation therefore cannot be overstated and must continue to be a key pillar in Jamaica’s
growth agenda. Jamaican goods enjoy world-renowned recognition with the global market exhibiting an insatiable appetite for all things Jamaican. This has catapulted many of our producers into previously untested markets that we have since dominated even as our products continue to make forays into niche markets inspired by shifts in global demand.
As we mark National Manufacturers’ Month 2020 under the theme ‘Recover and Renew with Manufacturing,’ I salute the efforts of Jamaica’s manufacturers, particularly in the face of the challenges wrought by the Novel Coronavirus
(COVID-19), and emphasize the government’s commitment to supporting the continued growth of this sector.
It is interesting to note that for the January to March 2020 quarter, prior to the on-set of COVID-19, the manufacturing and distribution sector was the second best performing sector, following the agriculture, forestry and fisheries sector. Through sheer resilience, our manufacturers have been able to increase export levels during these unprecedented times as well as maintain sufficient supplies of goods to satisfy our domestic market.
The value of exports to the US increased by $616 million to $5.1 billion during the January to May 2020 period, up from $4.5 billion in the same period in 2019. In addition, the total value of manufacturing exports by Jamaica Manufacturers
and Exporters Association (JMEA) members for the period January to May 2020 stood at $12.6 billion, representing $74-million increase over the similar period in 2019. This is no simple feat and as Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, I applaud our manufacturers!
I must also commend the sector for recognizing and grasping the opportunities that have emerged during these challenging times. Several companies have recorded increased exports to both traditional and new markets in the United
Kingdom, Canada, the United States (US) as well as other Caribbean countries, filling the gaps in global support shortages and leveraging the power of innovative and responsive thinking.
For its part, the government of Jamaica established a COVID-19 Recovery Task Force as well as the Export Growth Team to bolster business continuity during the pandemic. My ministry, the Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce (MIIC), has also ensured the completion of the National Five-Year Manufacturing Growth Strategy, a blueprint to achieving $81 Billion per annum in manufacturing output; increasing employment growth in the sector to 97,898 as well as increasing export growth of US$531 Million by 2025.
My ministry is also committed to working with all stakeholders to identify and remedy the challenges that impede the robust performance of the sector and thereby improve the current ecosystem toward spurring and supporting its
performance, recognizing that synchronicity of vision is the only way to move the sector ahead and ensure the ultimate objective of lifting Jamaica, land we love.
We have heard the cries of the sector for improved access to financing, particularly for our Micro, Small and Medium Sized (MSMEs) entities and have responded through several initiatives within the agencies of MIIC to this need.
Among these initiatives is the implementation of the Public Procurement Margin of Preference and Set-Aside orders that will effectively allow for special and differential treatment for our MSMEs under the public procurement law.
I encourage all manufacturers to leverage the resources of the MIIC and its agencies and to partner with us as we work together to achieve the goal of our National Development Plan of making Jamaica the place of choice to live, work,
raise families and do business!
Welcome to the official website of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries.
The Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries (MICAF) has been charged with the responsibility of driving the integration of the production of primary agricultural produce along all the stages of the supply chain through to value added and facilitating full commercialization of outputs of the agriculture, manufacturing, and service sectors.
We have, therefore, placed much energy and enthusiasm into the development of this website to provide timely information on the Ministry, our agencies and programmes.
4 St. Lucia Avenue, Kingston 5, Jamaica
Telephone: (876) 968-7116
Fax: (876) 960-7422
Hope Gardens, Kingston 6, Jamaica
Telephone: (876) 927-1731-50 / (876) 619-1731