The Prime Minister in a message released post launch stated, “It is an unfortunate fact that for too long, a large section of the population remained unserved and underserved where vital private and public services are concerned, because of their inability or reluctance to travel to Kingston or other major urban centres where such services are located.”
The MBCI, which is being spearheaded by the Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC), will merge the efforts of both public and private sector sponsors and partners who will provide business development and technical support to MSMEs across the length and breadth of the island. The programme which, invariably decentralizes the services of the participating organizations, will be implemented over the next three (3) years in segments, over a phased basis.
The Mobile Business Clinic will kick off on October 29 in St. James and provide a myriad of business development services including financial consultation, Technology Innovations, Business Advice, Consultation and Formalization, Logistics Hub Training, Standards and Certification and Business Modelling. Importantly, partners will facilitate value chain linkages through clustering and connections with other business partners, as well as provide expertise in project management, research and business monitoring support.
Industry Minister, Hon. Anthony Hylton who spoke at the launch indicated that in addition to offering business development support, the Clinics are critical to creating an enabling environment for MSMEs, suggesting that bureaucracy impedes progressive growth of
Minister Hylton stated, “High levels of bureaucracy in the administrative and regulatory system, coupled with high transaction costs, are inimical to the development and growth of MSMEs and entrepreneurs. Hence, the following areas have been targeted for reform:
Paying Taxes, Trading Across Borders, Enforcing Contracts and Registering Property and Starting a Business.”
He emphasized, “Standards are also critical in order to increase competitiveness and market access of goods and services produced by MSMEs. We must continue to inform our MSMEs about the necessity for standards and certification (product and management systems), as well as other initiatives (e.g. provision of training, technical guidance, grants) to support capacity building as a way of ensuring MSMEs have the relevant tools to take advantages of opportunities in global trade and investment.”
MBCI receives strong private sector support
The National Commercial Bank (NCB) and Fidelity Motors Limited have cemented their partnership for the initiative, lauding the efforts of the JBDC in extending business development support services to communities.
“NCB, with its sustained commitment to nation-building, has continuously sought ways to support the SME sector. We make strategic decisions based on the corporate philosophy that it is our duty to enable our stakeholders to realize their life goals and aspirations for the greater good of society. That is why initiatives such as this are important to the Bank,” said Mrs. Audrey Tugwell-Henry, Senior General Manager, Retail Banking Division, National Commercial Bank.
Fidelity Motors contributed three Nissan Mobile Office Units to be used in the delivery of business services in the region. The Mobile Business Clinic Initiative was launched on September 16 at the NCB Wellness Centre in Kingston. To learn more about the programme contact can be made with the JBDC at or 1-888-232-4357. A full schedule of events can be obtained by visiting www.jbdc.net.