Growth & Jobs | Industry and commerce minister hails expo
The recently concluded Jamaica International Exhibition (JIE), which ran over three days (June 1-3) at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, St James, was a major boost for Brand Jamaica in every sense of the word, according to Minister of Investment, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries Karl Samuda.
Samuda, who toured every single one of the more than 110 booths last Friday, in the company of Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce President T'Shura Gibbs, said that the inaugural event "is a big step" for Jamaica as it relates to the country's international marketing efforts.
"I wish to commend the JMA on this historic first staging of the JIE," Samuda remarked. "This is a big step forward not just in terms of our international marketing efforts, but also in terms of the international trade potential. Trade, for Jamaica, is essential to economic growth and prosperity, to improved living standards, and to the growth and success of businesses, both large and small."
Access to global marketplace
The minister said that he was very encouraged by the huge turnout of participants, adding that not only would the international trade show open doors, but it would also "create the avenue where local businesses can now have their own personal access to the global marketplace".
"What I am seeing here today is real optimism for the future," the minister pointed out. "I have always maintained that the Government and its agencies have to lead the way as facilitators and not as hindrances. Like the prime minister, I also see this as a big deal and one of the best-put-together expos we have had in a long time. Again, congratulations to the JMA and its team for this wonderful exhibition."
JIE offers real opportunities - MoBay Chamber president
T'Shura Gibbs, who only recently assumed the helm as head of the Montego Bay Chamber, was impressed. "What a way to start my presidency!" she quipped. "The JIE (Jamaica International Exhibition) is a wonderful event for both the city of Montego Bay and, by extension, Jamaica," she also pointed out.
"As a first-time event, this is simply amazing! What it is also telegraphing is that the opportunities for economic growth and prosperity are real and are there for us to take advantage of. This is what the JIE is about ... to bring businesses together in an up-close and personal manner, where deals can be made."
The three-day event, which ended on Saturday with much fanfare and fireworks, saw participants from within the Caribbean, Canada and the United States. It also saw a wide cross section of participants from both local and international companies, including tourism, construction, business process outsourcing, agriculture, and manufacturing.