Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller (centre), shares a light moment with (from left) Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda and CARICOM Chairman, Gaston Browne; Chairman of Sandals Resorts International, Gordon 'Butch' Stewart; Chief Executive Officer of Sandals Resorts International, Adam Stewart; and Chief Executive Officer, Digicel Business, Paul Osborne. JIS Photo
By Huntley Medley
ST JOHN’S, Antigua (JIS) -- Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller has urged the Caribbean business community to play a greater role in the mechanisms that have been created to encourage economic growth, employment, business expansion, social improvement and overall development in member states of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).
She has also expressed support for the integration of the private sector in the strategic planning process for the Caribbean region.
Speaking during a luncheon meeting involving CARICOM heads of government and chief executive officers of several major Caribbean businesses held in Antigua on Wednesday, Simpson Miller expressed support for the efforts of the CARICOM Secretariat to launch the Caribbean Business Council to provide a renewed platform for the engagement of the private sector at the institutional level of regional integration.
She encouraged the CARICOM business community to identify and accept its role in assisting the region to build its economic resilience, by supporting the acceleration of the implementation and use of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME).
The Jamaican prime minister also emphasized the importance of the private sector’s endorsement of the work of CARICOM’s Commission on the Economy, particularly in relation to measures geared towards creating greater opportunities for businesses and improving the national and regional business regulatory environment.
Simpson Miller called on the representatives of the private sector to explore new and innovative business opportunities throughout the region that can generate wealth and create employment.
“I want to highlight the importance of the private sector’s involvement in public-private partnerships that will allow them to play a central role in research and development, innovation, information and communications technology and entrepreneurship, which will have the effect of promoting productivity and capitalizing on the comparative advantage of the region,” the prime minister said.