Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller (right), is greeted by Assistant Foreign Minister, People’s Republic of China, Zheng Zeguang (left); and Jamaica's Ambassador to China, Ralph Thomas, shortly after her arrival at the Beijing International Airport in China. The Prime Minister is on a five-day official visit to the Asian country
BEIJING, China (JIS) -- Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller has welcomed plans by China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) to establish offices in Jamaica as a regional hub for its operations.
Simpson Miller told the company’s top brass during a meeting at China Communications and Construction Company (CCCC), in Beijing on Wednesday that she was pleased to hear of the company’s plan.
She also noted that there are a number of investment opportunities in Jamaica at this time and urged them to favourably consider further investment in the country.
Simpson Miller named the proposed logistics hub and the support facilities as areas for investment, pointing out that investing in the country is a “win win situation” for CHEC and Jamaica.
The prime minister assured that Jamaica would provide support to the company in establishing its hub in Jamaica.
The CHEC is a subsidiary of CCCC, whose president, Liu Qitao, informed that the company is focusing on a number of future expansion projects and it is looking to Jamaica as a major investment target market to facilitate this.
“And, we hope that Jamaica can provide us with such a platform that will further develop our collaboration and to expand our collaboration to larger scales and higher levels,” Qitao said.
He also revealed that the Jamaica North-South Highway is the company’s first international investment project in infrastructure.
Noting that CHEC has a number of projects to complete, the CCCC president committed his company to guaranteeing the completion of the projects ‘in good time, good schedule (and) in good quality.”
Qitao said the company has its focus on the Kingston Harbour General Operating Project and a long term concession for the Kingston Container Terminal, among other projects.
The prime minister arrived in China on Tuesday for a five-day official visit.
The prime minister and her delegation are scheduled to meet with the leadership of important state institutions such as the China Export-Import Bank and the China Development Bank, as well as major firms currently doing business in Jamaica and those with strong investor interest.
She is also slated to have discussions on development challenges associated with climate change and global warming and, in particular, those faced by small island developing states (SIDS) in implementing necessary climate adaptation mechanisms and recovering from the significant damage caused by natural disasters.
The prime minister will participate in discussions regarding the role of the Group of 77 nations and China in the effective operation of the United Nations (UN) and multilateral systems to ensure that the voice and representation of emerging and developing countries are enhanced in the global political and economic frameworks.
A small private sector delegation has also accompanied the prime minister to explore trade and investment opportunities with officials and business interests in China. They will attend a business forum on Friday.