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The Economy

February, 2022
Thematic Area: 

Financial inclusion is a key element of poverty reduction and inclusive development. In seeking to improve citizens’ well-being and increase economic growth, financial inclusion enables individuals and businesses to build resilience and capitalize on economic opportunities. Notwithstanding these benefits, there are barriers to expanding access to and usage of the four functionalities that facilitate inclusion: savings, insurance, credit, and payment services. This report sought to identify these hindrances in the context of Jamaica, with a view to remedying them.

May, 2017
Thematic Area: 

Jamaica is unique for many reasons. Perhaps the most striking among these is that for almost every resident in the
country, there is an individual living in the diaspora abroad. This near one-to-one ratio of nationals to diaspora members
presents a tremendous opportunity for cross-border engagement, among people who share common cultures and
histories.
 
Diasporas can, and in many cases do play an important role in the economic development of their countries of origin or
ancestry. Beyond sending remittances, they can also promote trade and foreign direct investment, create businesses,
spur entrepreneurship and transfer new knowledge and skills. The Jamaican Diaspora, therefore, is believed to represent
a very powerful reservoir of capital, relationships, skills and expertise that remains largely untapped, and, if realised,
can assist in the growth and development of Jamaica. However, beyond remittances, there is little empirical evidence
to support this.

June, 2018
Thematic Area: 

Care work is what individuals do every day when they spend time cooking, cleaning and caring for children, the ill, the disabled and the elderly, and maintaining a household.  The total of all care work, paid and unpaid, comprises the care economy.  The care economy is a relatively new but highly significant concept in thinking about the labour market, productivity and economic growth. Whereas paid care work is considered a service, and is counted as productive work and in national output, unpaid care work is not valued, counted or considered in national statistics or policy agendas. Unpaid care work has, up until the last few years, been thought to be too diffcult to measure and not relevant for policies.

November, 2018
Thematic Area: 

A country’s ability to mobilize revenue through taxation (i.e. to have an effective tax system) is synonymous with its capacity to achieve sustainable growth and development. Through taxes, the state receives the funding necessary to perform its functions and duties effectively. As such, the first and often the main objective of a tax system is to generate sufficient revenue to finance public sector activities in a non-inflationary way. This report focuses on the relative effectiveness of different tax types–value added taxes, income taxes, and property taxes – to generate revenue in the Jamaican context. It assesses and compares the efficiency of each tax type. 

February, 2014
Thematic Area: 

There has been a recent outcry in Jamaica against the high and increasing fees and charges being levied by banks on some of their services. The fees attracting most attention are those that relate to basic transactions such as withdrawing cash from another bank’s ATM or stopping payment on a cheque. Charges on fairly common misdemeanours, such as writing a cheque that subsequently bounces or incurring an overdra on an account are also frequently identified as being exorbitant.i Because these fees and charges are levied on fairly commonplace activities, the cumulative effect on an individual or firm can be high, and the aggregate macroeconomic effect through heightened transactions costs cannot be ignored. 

 

October, 2007
Thematic Area: 

Research on the relationship between crime and the economy in Jamaica found two key links. One is that crime directly retards economic growth. The second is that the high rate of violent crime, apparently connected to high levels of interpersonal trust and low levels of confidence in the organs of the State - the olice and court system - heightens transaction costs and therefore diminishes economic activity. Given the apparent connection between violent crime and the loss of confidence in the state, an effective strategy to tackle crime thereby necessitates a restoration of this confidence. 

October, 2016
Thematic Area: 

The re-establishment of diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba, and their agenda for normalising relations hold more opportunities than threats for Jamaica. The changes in the U.S.-Cuba relationship strengthen the already positive climate for economic growth and investment in the relatively large and diverse Cuban market, and will support that country’s progressive investment policy reforms and growth in private enterprise. The prospect of further growth in the Cuban economy is an opportunity for revival of the Jamaican economy. 

 

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