Dave Lindo, Gleaner Writer
Due to space challenges, Manchester has to wait a while to fulfil its ambition of becoming an Information and Commercial Technology (ICT) centre.
Julian Robinson, state minister in the ministry of science, technology, energy and mining, said while Mandeville has several favourable factors such as population, skills level, percentage of young people who are highly educated, and infrastructure, there are obstacles.
"We have been challenged by a couple of things. One is the availability of space," Robinson said. "These companies are looking for spaces at a minimum of 25, 000 square feet and upwards. They want, in what I would call an air-conditioned warehouse, a big open space, which allows them to see an entire production floor without a lot of partition etc..., that is the ideal space that companies are looking for," said Robinson.
The ICT programme in Manchester, Mandeville, in particular, was a part of the People's National Party (PNP) manifesto, leading up to the 2011 general election.
Robinson, who was speaking at the annual general meeting of the Manchester Chamber of Commerce in Mandeville last Thursday, said his ministry has brought in a number of companies into Manchester to explore the possibility of the parish becoming an ICT centre, but none has borne fruit so far.