New National Strategy for the Global Digital Services Industry

The Jamaican Cabinet has approved the implementation of a new national strategy to develop the Global Digital Services (GDS) sector.

This strategy will provide a model for industry expansion and support the development and diversification of outsourcing in Jamaica.

The strategy will guide Jamaica as the island seeks to increase exports of high-value digital services, attract investment and harness new industry trends and technological advancements.

It will help reposition Jamaica as a destination for higher value-added digital services, encourage more jobs across the outsourcing value chain, improve industry revenue generation, and support the growth of domestic entrepreneurship in the digital services space.

To this end, the cabinet approved the creation of the Global Task Force on the Digital Services Sector under the chairmanship of Senator Aubyn Hill, Minister of Industry, Investment and Trade.

Hill noted that the previous focus within the global services sector was to lay the groundwork to build the industry, promote the sector to investors, and implement policies and incentives to create a business-friendly ecosystem.

Now with an extension focus on the global digital services sector, Hill said the government aims to continue its work, but priorities have broadened to include increasing the export of primarily digital, high-value services.

He revealed that the government believes that this approach help dramatically increase the employment of many more Jamaicans and hard currency earnings.

More than 50,000 people work in the outsourcing industry, employed by more than 70 GSS companies, with cumulative annual revenue of over US$900 million.

Jamaica’s trade and investment promotion agency, JAMPRO, will serve as the secretariat with responsibility for executing the strategy.

Agency President Diane Edwards said, “JAMPRO will work with industry stakeholders to implement many of the initiatives embedded in the strategy. This is truly a holistic approach and will require the participation of multiple parties to achieve our goals for the sector. »

To reposition Jamaica as a higher value destination, JAMPRO will work with the Global Services Association of Jamaica (GSAJ), the Jamaica Technology & Digital Alliance (JTDA), government departments and other entities to raise awareness in overseas markets to the provision of services on the island. capacities.

JAMPRO will also continue to work with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, educational institutions and industry bodies to develop the talent pool needed for higher value services, digital services and information technology careers.

Initiatives such as the Global Services Sector Project’s Skills upgrading strategyand the Amber/HEART NSTA Coding Academy will help improve the skills of Jamaicans in areas such as management and leadership; IT infrastructure, such as cloud computing and cybersecurity; Communication; digital marketing; software development and integration; critical and analytical thinking; and human-centered design and interaction. This will contribute to employment growth within the industry.

The Ministry of Science, Energy and Technology, the Jamaican Special Economic Zones Authority and the ICT Authority will also be involved in initiatives ranging from facilitating market entry for service providers to improving cost competitiveness and improving the quality of telecommunications services.

Other collaborations will prioritize increased involvement of domestic service providers in the export of services and connect domestic small and medium enterprises with foreign service providers to take advantage of global value chain opportunities. .

Edwards said JAMPRO is confident that this new strategy will keep Jamaica on a path of rapid expansion in the GDS sector, as it recommends the execution of measures that will protect the industry from vulnerabilities such as natural and created challenges. by man, and stagnation. The strategy will ensure that Jamaica continuously meets the current and future needs of the industry and its customers.

She said: “While we have seen significant growth in outsourcing to Jamaica, it is important for us to continue to progress in our approach and business to solidify Jamaica’s role as a reputable GDS destination for years to come. With this proactive initiative, I believe Jamaica will continue to grow and we will see a positive impact on our economy.

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