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Jamaica stands to benefit significantly from investment in special economic zones (SEZ) and the country’s bid to become a global logistics hub.
SEZs are areas within a country that are created to facilitate rapid economic growth, by leveraging tax incentives as a way of attracting foreign investment and technological advancement. Logistics services are strongly associated with trade expansion and export diversification.
Citing the example of countries such as Singapore, Israel and Qatar, with relatively comparable populations but significantly higher gross domestic product (GDP) per capita than Jamaica, Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Aubyn Hill argued that Jamaica cannot attain economic wealth by limiting output and markets.
“We need to export a lot more, but it’s important that we export not just goods but also services. What local businesses must do, if we are going to change from three million people with a small per-capita GDP to three million people with a rich per-capita GDP, is that people who trade must now look to invest in our country to manufacture, build, package, repackage, assemble things and provide services that we sell to the world. That [will] bring in hard currency to make the little man in our country better off,” he pointed out to JIS News.