Prime Minister Andrew Holness declared that the sovereignty of Jamaica is foremost as the Government enters relations with bilateral partners.
Speaking at the Official handing over ceremony for the Jamaica China Goodwill Infant Schools 1 & 2, in Olympic Gardens West Central St. Andrew today (Wednesday, October 31) the Prime Minister explained that the country’s pre-eminence is critical, and will be preserved and protected especially as the relationship between Jamaica and its international partners increases.
In specific reference to the Government’s infrastructure and development in partnership with the Government of China, Prime Minister noted that there is much fear mongering being spread in the society.
“I don’t think that there needs to be any fearmongering. The Government of Jamaica has been very strategic, and the sovereignty of Jamaica is always foremost in my mind. So when we engage, we engage with that as a non-negotiable part of the partnership,” said Prime Minister Holness.
The Prime Minister stressed that it would be “tantamount to the ridiculous” for Jamaica to not engage in business relations with China, which is the second largest economy in the world.
“We are part of a global village. Where we are located in the world, shipping passes us near and regularly. It is unavoidable that we would be looked at; sought after as a logistics node,” explained Prime Minister Holness.
The Prime Minister further stated that the infrastructure that have been built with the assistance of the Chinese Government or Chinese companies, were being done as investments and all have been beneficial to the economy.
Prime Minister Holness also underscored that the Government is strategic when entering agreements.
“What we must ensure as we have always done, is that if we borrow, we borrow smartly. We seek to get the best rates and we make a commitment as we have made with other countries and other multi-lateral institutions as it is in our constitution that we must repay our loans,’ said Prime Minister Holness.
In the meantime, the Prime Minister thanked the Chinese Government for its investment in Jamaica’s education sector.
“Let me say how grateful the people of Morant Bay and Olympic Gardens are for this contribution and generally the people of Jamaica,” stated Prime Minister Holness.
The Chinese Government in partnership with the Government of Jamaica has built two state of the art early childhood institutions.
The schools are called the Jamaica China Goodwill Infant Schools 1&2. They are located in West Central St. Andrew and St. Thomas Eastern.