More than 200 Jamaicans residing in Florida, USA attended a special forum focusing on the National Debt Exchange (NDX) programme, implemented by the Government of Jamaica in February. Hosted by the JNBS Florida Representative Office, the event took place at the Sheraton Suites Hotel in Plantation Florida, on Saturday, April 20.
Earl Jarrett, General Manager of Jamaica National Building Society (JNBS), delivered a wide ranging presentation, focusing on the NDX and its impact on the Jamaican economy, as well as financial institutions, such as Jamaica National.
“We have to look to the capabilities and brain power that exists in each person, here in the Diaspora, as well as in Jamaica, to help our country to start climbing the ladder of success,” he declared.
The NDX offers an opportunity for a new way of thinking, Mr. Jarrett stated. “It requires us to look at how we run businesses better; and how we shape a Jamaica, which is more dependent on the ability of its people.”
Mr. Jarrett also affirmed that there was need for, “a cohesive plan that will ensure that the government, the private sector and non-governmental organisations work together, in a single direction, with a single set of objectives, so that our economy can grow.”
The main objective of the NDX is to lower the Government’s cost of servicing its debt; and, thereby help to meet the requirements for an Agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which is the centre piece of the Administration’s three-year Economic Recovery Programme.
“There are significant possibilities, such as the work to transform Kingston Harbour into a Global Logistics Hub, which would position Jamaica to take advantage of the anticipated increase in maritime activities which will emerge from the current expansion of the Panama Canal,” the General Manager stated.
The Hon. Sandra Grant Griffiths, Consul General for Jamaica to Florida, said that, consistent with other forums, the NDX event was instrumental in helping Jamaicans in the Diaspora to learn more about developments in Jamaica.
JNBS member, Angela Bullock, said that she appreciated the main presentation, which provided “a wealth of information about the NDX.”
The forum was part of a weekend of activities, which included a church service held on Sunday, April 21, to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the JNBS Florida Representative Office.