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Government of Jamaica   

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Sustainable Development Framework

The SEZ Authority has embraced the sustainable development of SEZs as a means of “meeting the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. The Authority, therefore, uses the environmental, economic, and social components of Sustainability to assist the evaluation of SEZ Proposals.

The SEZ policy’s, Special Economic Zones – where globally competitive firms thrive, driving unprecedented growth and development for all in a logistics-centred Jamaican economy, is the vision statement that defines Jamaica’s SEZ Economic and Development Framework. The SEZs are meant not just to attract investments to Jamaica but to spur growth and development. However, the investment that result in growth and development must be the right fit, meaning they must follow the principles of SEZ Jamaica Development Framework which is based on the SEZ Jamaica principles of Sustain-a-Livity.

A socio-economic evaluation is required to estimate the benefits and costs of the project in national terms and including both quantified and non-quantified impacts. An important part of evaluating a project includes the need to address problems and constraints and considering possible alternative solutions.

  • The critical question for SEZ Jamaica is does an investment fit?
  • Does it cause unprecedented growth and development?
  • Does it contribute to a logistics-centred Jamaican economy?
  • Does it fit the Economic and Developmental Framework?

The Authority needs to determine whether a proposed investment is in keeping with the overall developmental objectives of the Special Economic Zone Regime. This weighs the sustainability (economic, environment and social) of the proposed project by considering its contribution to Jamaica achieving:

  • The SEZ Policy
  • The National Development Plan: Vision 2030
  • The Logistics Hub Initiative Industry Analysis and Master Plan
  • The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The following provides some insight in the Authority’s review and evaluation in keeping with the Economic and Development Framework.

1. SEZ Policy: Objectives

  • Modern & integrated policy, financial, legal & institutional framework for SEZ development established,
  • Trade & business facilitation environment for SEZs improved,
  • Sustainable linkages between SEZs & the rest of the economy created,
  • Onsite & offsite infrastructure services, assets & facilities developed,
  • Productive capacity increased through human capital formation, technology transfer, business innovation & entrepreneurship,
  • Increased domestic employment,
  • Competitive incentives with net benefits to the Jamaican society,
  • Increased exports,
  • International standards for SEZ development adopted,
  • SEZ development initiatives are consistent with development goals under Vision 2030 NDP & existing Government priorities.

2. Vision 2030: Goals and Outcomes

  • Jamaicans are empowered to achieve their fullest potential
    • A Healthy & Stable Population
    • World-Class Education & Training
    • Effective Social Protection
    • Authentic & Transformational Culture
  • The Jamaican society is secure, cohesive & just,
    • Security & Safety
    • Effective Governance
  • Jamaica’s economy is prosperous
    • A Stable Macro-economy
    • An Enabling Business Environment
    • Strong Economic Infrastructure
    • Energy Security & Efficiency
    • A Technology-Enabled Society
    • Internationally Competitive Industry Structures
  • Jamaica has a healthy natural environment
    • Sustainable Management & Use of Environmental & Natural Resources
    • Hazard Risk Reduction & Adaptation to Climate Change
    • Sustainable Urban & Rural Development

3. The Logistics Hub Initiative: Enablers

  • Improving institutional effectiveness
  • Ensuring supportive policies & legislative & regulatory frameworks
  • Enhancing workforce capacity
  • Developing efficient & productive infrastructure
  • Providing efficient transport logistics systems
  • Facilitating sustainable financing
  • Promoting the LHI

4. The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The Sustainable Development Goals are the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. They address the global challenges we face, including those related to poverty, inequality, climate, environmental degradation, prosperity, and peace and justice. The Goals interconnect and to leave no one behind, it is important that we achieve each Goal and target by 2030. Click on any specific Goal below to learn more about each issue.

5. Economic Assessment and Analysis

The Authority also conducts an economic assessment and evaluation of the proposed projects. The economic assessment and analysis calculate the potential costs and assigns values to the anticipated benefits of a proposed SEZ project. This includes getting a clear understanding of the direct and indirect impacts of proposed projects and therefore includes environmental costs and benefits. The Authority is mandated to conduct a preliminary due diligence exercise concerning the applicant’s technical, financial and overall business capacity to undertake the proposed SEZ project together with its detailed technical economic feasibility study, that includes the business plan and financial analysis, that sets out, among other technical, economic, business and financial evaluations, all social mitigation measures and phased development and zoning plans as specified.

The overall economic assessment and analysis will determine the gross financial contribution made by a project to the economy in comparison to the value of the incentives that the government has foregone. This economic impact will measure the financial benefits from the investment, income, direct and indirect spending that the project will generate in the economy; to demonstrate the importance of the SEZ incentive to the prospective stakeholders; and to compare the relative impact and success of the project will have on the economy.