Sun | Sep 24, 2017

JMA committed to 'Buy Jamaica... Build Jamaica' campaign

Published:Friday | December 9, 2016 | 12:00 AM
President of the Jamaica Manufacturers' Association Metry Seaga

Jamaica is proving that it can provide the world with items that can stand up against international competitors.

The Jamaica Manufacturers' Association (JMA) remains committed and passionate about the 'Buy Jamaica... Build Jamaica' campaign. According to Metry Seaga, president of the JMA, manufacturing is the livelihood of over 80,000 men and women, and remains critical to the backbone of the economy.

"If we make a decision to maintain our loyalty to Jamaican products, it will create jobs and, in turn, give rise to the wealth that is essential for economic growth. It is important that we support the wide range of innovative, quality, competitively priced products made in Jamaica, to create a better Jamaica," Seaga said.

The JMA president said that individuals should not be asked to buy Jamaican just out of loyalty to their country, but should be prompted to do so because of the quality of the products being offered for sale.

"If we are to grow the economy at acceptable levels, then we must increase the number of Jamaican products and services. This, however, must be done competitively if we are to benefit. It is only when we produce competitively that we will see improved growth and employment," Seaga said.

 

STIMULATE EMPLOYMENT

 

Buying local, Seaga said, helps to stimulate employment, retain valuable foreign exchange, generate revenue for the Government to undertake socio-economic programmes, encourage the expansion and modernisation of the manufacturing sector and improve the overall standard of living.

"It is important to expand the discussion outside of the supermarket. The Government needs to understand that if they spend outside of our markets with regard to imports, then they are making the other countries richer and ourselves poorer," Seaga said.

Even after having started the process by strengthening linkages with the agriculture and tourism sectors, through the Farmers' Market, Tourism Linkages Hub and Expo Jamaica initiatives, Seaga said greater collaboration is needed across all sectors.

"We need to foster a culture of buying Jamaican, where consumers read their labels and support products made in Jamaica; where the Government implements policies conducive to the growth of the sector; where the media is mobilising Jamaicans to support our own as a matter of national importance; and where all Jamaicans are proud Brand Jamaica ambassadors," he said.

- K.H.