DBJ to Present Investment Projects at Regional Infrastructure Conference

The Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) has packaged several infrastructure development projects, which it will present to investors at the Regional Infrastructure Conference to be held from March 6-7 at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston.

The two-day event is focused on public-private partnership (PPP) under the theme ‘Delivering Economic Growth through Partnership: Private Sector Participation in Infrastructure Development’.

“We have a booklet of investment opportunities,” said DBJ General Manager for PPP and Privatisation, Denise Arana, while addressing a recent Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Think Tank.

“We have always heard from the private sector that they are tired of hearing the Government speak about the policies; they want to know what is in the pipeline. Therefore, we thought it very important to invite some key Government of Jamaica officials to come and speak about the projects that they are preparing to take to the market,” she indicated.

“So, we will have the National Water Commission, the Port Authority of Jamaica, the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica, the Urban Development Corporation and Airports Authority of Jamaica,” she noted further.

Ms. Arana told JIS News that Jamaica is a regional leader in PPP. She noted that the PPP programme is guided by the policy put in place in 2012.

Jamaica’s PPP Policy sets out the principles that should guide decision-making by ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) that are considering utilising PPPs to improve infrastructure and the delivery of public services.

Ms. Arana indicated that through assistance from the World Bank-funded Foundation for Competitiveness and Growth Project, the DBJ has undertaken several capacity-building sessions with MDAs “for them to understand PPPs and how they can use these arrangements to develop their projects”.

She noted that with the financial support, the Government is able to hire lawyers, financial and technical advisors, as well as complete the required studies to undertake projects.

Funding has also been provided for MDAs.

“The Government is prepared at this stage to present the opportunities, well structured, backed by information, for the private sector to make a decision,” she pointed out.

The Government has utilised PPP for several major projects, including upgrading of the Sangster International Airport; development of the East-West and North-South legs of Highway 2000 as well as the Kingston Container Terminal expansion project.

Jamaica’s PPP programme has been recognised internationally and recorded an improvement in ranking from 13th to 8th in the 2014 INFRASCOPE study conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit and the Inter-American Development Bank.

Article by: Shari-Ann Palmer
Photo from: www.jis.gov.jm

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