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Nigel Clarke, Jamaica’s finance minister, wants to establish the country into a growth and development hub

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According to Dr. Nigel Clarke, Minister of Finance and Public Service, having cash reserves that can be utilised to seize chances is beneficial for Jamaica’s expansion and advancement.

Speaking at the first-ever “Sygnus Day,” held by the alternative investment company Sygnus, Clarke stated the Andrew Holness administration was in favour of expanding the country’s capital markets so that capital might become more widely available in Jamaica.

“Our goal is to commoditize money (and develop) Jamaica, where having a good idea or a good strategy, having the zeal in your belly, the mindset, and the nerves to embark on the arduous path of an entrepreneurial career, should not prevent you from succeeding. You shouldn’t let the fact that you don’t come from a wealthy family deter you, Clarke added.

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He claimed that a strong private sector with the ability to raise investments on a scale “that far beyond the capabilities of the government” will be the most effective way to ensure the long-term sustainability of the nation.

The secret is to create an atmosphere that makes investment appealing, offers investment opportunities, allows for investment without interference from the government, and provides ways to mobilise investment.

Commoditizing capital, according to Clarke, speaks to the availability and affordability of investment, particularly for small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs).

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The government has been pursuing policies that are supportive of this mobilisation of private capital in Jamaica, the finance and public service minister told the audience, in order to create a strong environment for medium-sized and small businesses.

Some of these attempts have included removing anticompetitive levies, putting private assets on the market, and changing legislation to facilitate the smoother accumulation of capital.

A change to the rules governing pension investments was enacted in 2019, enabling pension funds and institutional investors to engage in private entities that are solely devoted to venture capital and private equity. In addition, as stated in this year’s budget presentation, the government is funding the establishment of a venture capital fund through the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) with an investment of J$750 million (One Jamaica dollar is equal to US$0.008 cents). The government also established the SME private equity fund, incubator fund, innovation fund, accelerator programme, and other programmes.

The lack of an aunt or uncle you can call shouldn’t deter you since a Jamaica where doing so is a requirement for entrepreneurship success is a Jamaica that will turn on itself, according to the proverb. That Jamaica is unsustainable. The forces of animosity will bring down that Jamaica, according to Clarke.

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Patrick Huston
Patrick Huston
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