Attracting investment and creating more jobs is part of the government of Jamaica’s plan to create a vibrant, logistics-centred economy. The outsourcing industry is a vital part of that plan. With 70% of buyers planning to increase their use of outsourcing, we are convinced that this will continue to be a major growth sector for years to come.

With our continuously improving business environment, stable economy, globally recognised talent pool, modern and cost-effective telecommunications, and our advantageous geographic location, we are certainly open for business in the outsourcing sector industry, as well as in other areas of our economy. We also have a comprehensive suite of incentives that investors can enjoy: income tax concessions, exemption from duties and taxes on imported items for the business, and employment tax credits are just a few.

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In addition, we offer free training and recruitment support, which can be customised to the needs of investors.

Supporting outsourcing

Today, we are proud of the fact that Jamaica is home to an estimated 40 outsourcing companies, including leading global firms such as Xerox, Teleperformance, Hinduja Global Solutions, Alorica and Sutherland Global Services. More than 17,000 Jamaicans are currently employed in the sector, with projections for unprecedented levels of growth over the next five years.

More recent developments in the sector include the public-private partnership agreement to build an additional 11,000 square metres of space in the Naggo Head Technology Park in the parish of St Catherine, specifically for the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry. In Montego Bay, Barnett Park is home to a number of major BPO players, with construction under way for more to enter the space.

Moreover, existing companies, such as Sutherland Global Services, IBEX and Hinduja Global Services, have been expanding their operations. This is testament to the value that Jamaica offers as a nearshore outsourcing location, and the future growth potential of this trillion-dollar global industry.

As such, the government of Jamaica continues to introduce measures to support growth in the sector. Our investment promotion agency, Jampro, has introduced a number of strategies to boost growth of the outsourcing sector in Jamaica:

  • A multi-pronged approach focusing on the development of the ecosystem – policy, infrastructure, training – as well as aggressive marketing to increase global mindshare of Jamaica as an outsourcing location.
  • Expanding the industry through geographical dispersion, where possible, thereby presenting the full destination as an option for outsourcing.
  • Promoting the export of outsourcing services, while working closely with clients in the execution of marketing penetration initiatives, with the aim to secure global contracts for their Jamaica-based outsourcing services.

Anticipating future growth

Furthermore, to address the lack of readily available and suitable space to house outsourcing companies, the government of Jamaica has incentivised the build-out of space with the creation of an infrastructure loan facility, managed by the Development Bank of Jamaica. Our persistent promotion of the sector has resulted in a growing number of private sector investors becoming more overtly interested in developing real estate for the industry.

As we pave the way for the development of a logistics-centred economy, the recently passed Special Economic Zone Act has repealed the Jamaica Export Free Zone Act. Now, we are moving towards the designation, promotion, development, operation and management of special economic zones.The act also allows for the establishment of a Special Economic Zone Authority, a tax credit for investment in employee training, and the granting of benefits and other measures to attract domestic and foreign investments in BPO and other sectors.

We are continuously working to improve the business climate and see an even brighter future for more outsourcing investments in particular, and generally, within other sectors of our economy. This is an exciting time to do business and invest in Jamaica.

Anthony Hylton is minister of industry, investment and commerce for Jamaica. The Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce of Jamaica contributed to the cost of production of this report, along with other sponsors. Writing and editing were carried out independently by fDi Magazine