Moving Back to Jamaica

A blog about my Move Back to Jamaica after 20+ years of living in the US. Most of the articles focus on the period from 2005-2009 when the transition was new, and at it's most challenging.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Following the Irish

This ad made me really think...

Ireland recently resuscitated their economy after making several structural changes that I haven't yet researched.

It has enabled them to place the following advertisement in the most recent Harvard Business Review, which made me wonder when we in Jamaica will be able to make the same claim.

I can imagine my country placing one just like this in the future, boasting about the progress we are making and asking other firms to come and share in it.

Unfortunately, our business environment remains one of the most difficult to operate in, and there are much better alternatives that exist, in the eyes of many investors.
So far, I can't detect that this particular government understands the issue, as they don't tend to speak in tones that appeal to me, a small business owner.

Interestingly, today the opposition JLP came out with a message that their main emphasis will be job creation, which I think is the only way for us to climb out of the economic hole we are in.

1 Comments:

At 5/08/2007 8:11 PM, Anonymous common sense said...

fwade - good observation. Ireland had a civil war, Dominica Reublic had monetary crisis and yet these countries are transforming their economies. Ireland is a best-in-class economy after several years of bloody civil war. Asian economies are leading the globe, however their culture, religions and attitude to work are different from Ja culture. In several Jamiacan towns, Asians who don't speak English very well are opening grocery stores and making money and they are not rich overseas investors! They are small family run businesses. It's time to realize the government is much ado about nothing. They have set a low bar of expectations and too many people look to them for a handout. Our "leaders" lack implementation skills to make a serious change in our economic or social situation. they have no absolutely no entrepeneurship skills and it's discouraging for someone who wants to start a business, because those that are in business have to pay excessive taxes when they can get a better return from govt debt. It's time local investors get the same tax breaks as overseas investors. They speak a lot about the diaspora, when in truth all they are interested in is money remittance. The diaspora wants to help, but I can tell from experience they are as frustrated as the local business person when it comes to red tape and corruption. The diaspora has the resources, skills to make a difference. The atitude of this and past governments has been to welcome foreigners, gladly pay them for services and tell our own people how much they should volunteer their services or take less money for the same services they woul pay a foreign owned firm a premium. Big hotels can do so much, but well paying jobs are needed and it is small business that employ more people than large companies even in the US. I applaud Butch Stewart for he makes a good product and makes money in spite of the difficult environment. I applaud him for recognizing those entrepeneurs who thrive in an indifferent and sometimes hostile business environment. So there is still hope that we can turn this situation around, but I doubt it will be led by any politician because they talk a good game, but their record speaks for itself. Jamaica has a growth record close to Haiti or Guyana! Imagine Bahamas and Cayman only have sea and sand and yet their record is impressive. Actions speak louder than words.

 

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