Speeches by the Prime Minister

PM Holness Remarks at the 1st Extraordinary Inter-Sessional Summit of the OACPS
Statement from Prime Minister Andrew Holness
Policy Statement – Prime Minister of Jamaica The Most Honourable Andrew Holness, ON, MP at the General Debate – 74Th Session of the United Nations General Assembly New York, 27th September 2019
Intervention by Prime Minister of Jamaica the Most Hon Andrew Holness, ON, MP at the EU-UN Spotlight Initiative High Level Event: Progress and Perspectives on Eliminating Violence Against Women and Girls, UNGA, New York
Report delivered by the Prime Minister of Jamaica The Most Honourable Andrew Holness, ON, MP  on behalf of the Climate Finance and Carbon Pricing Track
Statement by the Prime The Most Honourable Andrew Holness, Prime Minister ON, MP at the High Level Panel on Sustainable Ocean Economy

Co-convened High Level UN Meeting – Press Conference

May, 28 2020
PRESS BRIEFING REMARKS by the MOST HON. ANDREW HOLNESS, PRIME MINISTER OF JAMAICA High Level Event on Financing for Development in the Era of COVID-19 and Beyond on Thursday, May 28, 2020 ----------------------------------------------------------------------- * As you have seen from the widespread participation at today’s meeting, the international community is united and committed to taking the action required to mount a robust and coordinated response to the devastating economic and human impacts of COVID-19. * Over 50 Heads of State and Government responded to our invitation to participate at this High-Level Event. * It is fitting that the UN has taken the initiative as our co-convenor in this regard, as it comprises the broadest and most inclusive range of countries of any international organization. * By leveraging its convening power, the UN and its Member States have today launched a partnership with key stakeholders, including the private sector and civil society. * Our aim is to facilitate a process to devise concrete solutions to the development emergency that stems from the COVID-19 pandemic. * As we heard today, there is general agreement that the response to this pandemic will require large-scale, comprehensive multilateral effort particularly to support countries most in need.…

Co-convened High-Level UN Meeting – Closing Remarks

May, 28 2020
CLOSING REMARKS by the MOST HON. ANDREW HOLNESS, PRIME MINISTER OF JAMAICA High Level Event on Financing for Development in the Era of COVID-19 and Beyond on Thursday, May 28, 2020 ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. I am pleased with the spirit of determination exhibited today by global leaders and institutions, including the United Nations. We have committed to rescuing our economies and societies from the devastating economic and human impacts of COVID-19, and to emerge as more resilient societies. 2. What is abundantly clear from our exchanges is that the COVID-19 pandemic has triggered an unprecedented global development emergency. The magnitude of the shock from this pandemic has weakened our resilience and threatens to erode our hard-earned gains in pursuit of the sustainable development goals. 3. As co-convenors we are keen to support the important follow-up work that the working groups will be undertaking in line with the key areas explored today: 1. Global liquidity and financial stability 2. Debt vulnerability 3. Private sector creditors engagement 4. External finance for inclusive growth 5. Illicit financial flows 6.  And Recovering better for sustainability. These groups will be comprised of Member States supported by the UN Development System and in partnership with relevant international…

Labour Day Message 2020

May, 26 2020
My fellow Jamaicans, With giant leaps in science and technology, mankind may sometimes have a false sense of invincibility about the global civilization we have created. The COVID-19 Pandemic has exposed just how fragile we are and how vulnerable our connected world can be, ironically, by virtue of that same connectedness. We know that disruption is part of the natural order of things. We have experienced hurricanes, conflicts, and economic down-turn, but most of us have never experienced disruption of this magnitude and over such an extended period, in our living memories.  Nevertheless, we are resilient, and we will adapt, change and evolve; together we will overcome the pandemic and create a new normal way of living. Every cloud of crisis carries a silver lining of opportunity. Crisis focuses the national consciousness and clarifies positions. Things we thought impossible, which we were just simply reluctant to incorporate, are now imperatives. The pandemic has exposed just how inefficient and risky cash based transactions are, not just from a security point of view but from a public health point of view, especially when large numbers must gather at transaction points to collect transfers or make payments in person. However, governments have been…

Nurses’ Day Message 2020

May, 12 2020
Today on Nurses’ Day I pay special tribute to our hardworking Jamaican nurses who have shown great courage, kindness, and bravery in the face of a global pandemic. It takes an individual with a special heart to devote themselves to a profession requiring them to provide constant care and tend to the healthcare needs of others. Indeed, nurses are invaluable assets in the Jamaican healthcare system and as the world battles against Covid-19, our nurses, are on the frontline, providing life-saving interventions, gentle care, and reassurance with a spirit of kindness, to those who are sick. My administration recognizes the dedication of our nurses; we are proud and deeply grateful that they have chosen to serve their country in this way. As a country, we express our gratitude to our nurses for their sacrifice, compassion, selflessness and commitment to the health and well-being of Jamaicans. They are beacons of hope and towers of strength; working under enormous strain to deliver the best patient care possible, and we salute them wholeheartedly. I use this Nurses’ Day, to remind our citizens, to avoid discriminating against our nurses especially as they care for COVID-19 patients; be kind and courteous to them as they…
Statement from Prime Minister Andrew Holness

Statement from Prime Minister Andrew Holness

March, 17 2020
To advance further understanding as it relates to the implementation of measures in the public sector to encourage “work from home”, Permanent Secretaries are required to consult with department and agency heads to determine certain functions which could be carried out from home for seven days starting Wednesday, March 18, 2020 to March 25, 2020. The objective is to reduce the level of public travel and interactions. The private sector is also required to implement similar measures of having their staff work from home where possible. It is not the intention of the Government to shut down the economy. Therefore, we expect offices and factories to remain open and continue to produce and offer service with only the minimum staff necessary.


February, 11 2020
TOWARDS A DECADE OF GROWTH TO ANCHOR OUR PEACE AND PROSPERITY Honourable Members, we are gathered here at the dawn of a new decade. The seeds we have planted in the previous years are germinating and we commit to making this new decade one of increased growth, peace and prosperity in our land. Honourable Members, Jamaica has much to celebrate. Our emphasis on inclusive and sustainable economic growth has paid great dividends for our beloved nation. In recent years, Jamaica has made an extraordinary economic turnaround. We have experienced nineteen consecutive quarters of positive economic growth. Our debt-to-GDP ratio is projected to be below 92 percent by the end of March 2020 from a high of 147 percent seven years ago. Lower levels of debt accumulation and servicing have resulted in the State being able to redirect resources to invest in areas that will promote social and infrastructure development. Our October 2019 unemployment rate of 7.2 percent is the lowest in Jamaica’s history. Our regulatory reforms aimed at lessening the time and cost to do business have resulted in Jamaica being ranked as the best economy in the Caribbean for ease of doing business. We have trained more than 20,000…

Prime Minister Holness Christmas Message 2019

December, 25 2019
Merry Christmas! To all at home and abroad. As Christians we believe in the Immaculate Conception and birth; the life examples and teachings, and the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ to be the fundamental pillars of our faith. Christmas is the time reserved in our calendar to celebrate the birth of Christ, which happened during a time of great suffering and hardship some 2000 years ago. It was long prophesied that a great King would be born to liberate the people from bondage. However, Jesus and his message of personal liberation of the soul, by loving God with all your heart and loving your neighbour as you love yourself, was not the King or message that many expected, and indeed many conspired against him. Today, the world still looks for the hope of liberation from the struggles we face, and the message of Jesus’s birth remains the same. We must love God and believe in Him, and we must love one another as we love ourselves. Simple, simple yet profound guidance that the solution to our problems rest with our spirituality and humanity. The story of Jesus’ birth does not seek to offer us a scientific explanation of the solutions to our problems, rather it is a story of faith, that God manifested in man and that man can know God and have a personal relationship with God. It is a story of family; of Joseph and Mary regardless of their own struggles and poverty, sticking together and caring for one another. It is a story of great fraternity. People from…

National Heroes Day Message

October, 21 2019
My fellow Jamaicans, my fellow Jamaicans! Jamaica’s heritage is indeed our greatest legacy. The uniqueness of our people, our language, music, folklore, gastronomy, and traditional practices are undeniably amazing. People from all over the world aspire to live breathe and experience the Jamaican lifestyle and want to identify with the Jamaican brand. In that regard, I am pleased to extend a warm Jamaican greeting to one and all. The legacy of our treasured heritage spans generations. The freedom and privileges that we enjoy today and that some may even take for granted; we owe to the fortitude of our National Heroes. Our heritage defines who we are as a people, strong resilient and assertive. Those who continue to preserve, protect and promote our heritage today are national heroes. This week, we recognize outstanding individuals among us who have been inspirational forces, contributing positively to the growth and development of our community and our country at large. As I salute our National Heroes, I also congratulate all Jamaicans who will be honoured for their contribution to nation-building. This year, I encourage all Jamaicans to reflect with genuine pride on our cultural and material heritage. Let us celebrate “Our Heritage…A Great Legacy”. In…
Policy Statement – Prime Minister of Jamaica The Most Honourable Andrew Holness, ON, MP at the General Debate – 74Th Session of the United Nations General Assembly New York, 27th September 2019

Policy Statement – Prime Minister of Jamaica The Most Honourable Andrew Holness, ON, MP at the General Debate – 74Th Session of the United Nations General Assembly New York, 27th September 2019

September, 27 2019
Theme: “Galvanising multilateral efforts for poverty eradication, quality education, climate action and inclusion”   Mr. President, I extend heartiest congratulations on your election as President of this 74th Session of the General Assembly and assure you of Jamaica's full support in the work ahead. I must also convey our deepest appreciation to Her Excellency Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garcés, for so ably guiding our work in the preceding session. Mr. President, The United Nations is critical to building a world of peace, security and development. These are the hallmarks of our multilateral collaborative activities of which we can all be justly proud. No individual country can fulfill the development aspirations of its people, without working in partnership with others. We are grateful therefore, to the Secretary General and his team and all who have been the drivers behind the many successful UN initiatives. At the same time, our global space is facing unprecedented risks. These include deepening geopolitical conflicts; heightened trade tensions; terrorist attacks and new security threats. There is also growing religious intolerance, increasing xenophobic behavior and not least of all the devastating effects of climate change. Sadly, we are witnessing these phenomena against the background of fears of a…