Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, is encouraging private investors to develop underutilized assets around the country.
Such investment, he said, would contribute to economic growth by boosting the productivity of underused land and infrastructure.
Mr. Holness noted that in the Corporate Area there are pieces of property that have depreciated in value and need to be developed.
“The utilisation of those assets is at such a point where they are not contributing as much as they could to economic growth and development. Yes, we are making new investments, but at the same time, the investments that were made 40 to 50 years ago when many of the buildings in these areas were built (have now lost their value),” he said.
The Prime Minister was speaking at Guardian Group’s ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of an apartment complex at 9 Musgrave Avenue in St. Andrew on Wednesday (June 14).
He praised the Guardian Group for moving to develop the land, which was idle, into housing solutions for Jamaicans. He said the company’s “bold step into their very first real estate development project” will “add a tick to the growth counter”.
The Prime Minister noted further that “Guardian Life’s decision to make this major investment is a confirmation of confidence that Jamaica is making the right decisions as it moves along its path to growth”.
“Our country needs business leaders and institutions to demonstrate their confidence in Jamaica by ploughing back profits earned here into our economy. This signals to the investment community that Jamaica is the right place to invest,” he added.
The Prime Minister said it is for this reason that the Government has made significant investments in building the confidence of the business sector, “because that is how Jamaica is going to get growth”.
Meanwhile, President of Guardian Life Limited, Eric Hosin, said the company’s decision to venture into real estate development has been “well considered and well timed”.
“We see this project as benefiting all our stakeholders. The Jamaican economy will benefit from this investment with employment that will be generated, and increase in the housing stock in the target market,” he said.
Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang said the project is in line with the Government’s thrust to provide affordable housing solutions, especially for young professionals.
Member of Parliament for South Eastern St. Andrew, Julian Robinson, also welcomed the investment, noting that it is an excellent development for the area and a “sign of confidence in our economy”.
Dubbed ‘The Hampshire,’ the environmentally friendly seven-storey apartment complex, will sit on 1.23 acres of land.
The modern facility will comprise 66 apartments featuring internal laundries, balconies, metered utilities, and individual power generation for each apartment.
Also included are private storage facilities, water-storage tanks, adequate parking, 27,000 square feet of space for recreational activities, a pool on the upper deck, as well as an elevator.
Prices for the units start at US$144,950 ($18.8 million). The project is expected to be completed in 18 months.
Article by: Alecia Smith
Photo from: www.jis.gov.jm