First Look

Official Media Launch in South Florida of the Biennial Jamaica Diaspora Conference



Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade | 2015-04-21 00:00:00

Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade with responsibility for Diaspora Affairs, Hon. Arnaldo Brown, MP, will unveil the plans developed for the upcoming Sixth Biennial Jamaica National Diaspora Conference (June 13-18), at a Community Forum to take place on Thursday, April 30, at 6:30 p.m., at the Miramar City Hall, 2300 Civic Center Drive, Miramar.

The theme of the six-day Conference is “Jamaica and the Diaspora: Linking for Growth and Prosperity”, and will be convened at the Montego Bay Convention Center in St. James.

Members of the media and nationals of the Jamaican Diaspora here in South Florida, are all invited to participate in the Forum under the aegis of the Consulate General of Jamaica.  Pointing to the timeliness of the June conference, Consul General Franz Hall is encouraging the broadest possible participation, when considerable attention is being given in the USA, and globally, to the examination of the process and results of targetted engagement between Diaspora communities and homeland countries.

Minister Brown will highlight the Conference agenda with special focus on investment and trade opportunities and social services, including health and education.  The Conference is open to all persons of Jamaican descent living overseas and will provide the opportunity to align the skills and expertise that reside in the Diaspora with business and social development in Jamaica.

This year’s diversified agenda will also include a business and cultural exposition and a range of other meetings and activities culminating with a Diaspora Day of Service. The 2015 Conference agenda is a collaborative effort between several institutions including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, the Jamaica Diaspora Foundation, the Jamaica Diaspora Institute, the Jamaica Diaspora Advisory Board Members, key community persons and leaders in the Diaspora, and Diaspora community groups.

The six-day agenda will prominently feature plenary and highly interactive sessions which directly address investment opportunities and options for partnership between Jamaica and its Diaspora in the areas of health, education, local government and the role of the faith based organizations in development. A special symposium on immigration and deportation will also form part of the agenda. The Diaspora Day of Service will provide the opportunity for various Diaspora organizations to undertake outreach activities in communities of their choosing throughout the island.

The Prime Minister of Jamaica will address the Opening Ceremony acknowledging the importance of the mutually beneficial relationship between the Diaspora and its homeland. The Governor General’s Diaspora Awards will continue to recognize the stellar achievements and outstanding contributions of Diaspora members in a variety of areas such as business, philanthropy, politics, diplomacy, science, technology, medicine, food, fashion, music and sports in their adopted countries as well as in Jamaica.

The Conference will repeat the exciting and engaging Marketplace based on the overwhelming positive responses from the Conference in 2013.  The Marketplace is designed to facilitate business matchmaking and deal making and the use of related government services.  An added feature this year, called Marketplace Live, will showcase each night, business, culture, entertainment, and Jamaican culinary delights all combined to showcase the best that Jamaica has to offer.

Other added elements of the Conference will include working breakfast meetings, focusing on economic diplomacy, investment and trade, social services and development as well as complementary activities such as a golf tournament, church services, business and leisure tours. The Hilton Rose Hall Resort and Spa is the official host hotel.

The biennial Diaspora Conferences continue to serve as a forum of engagement with Jamaicans overseas with an agenda which addresses issues of concern to the Diaspora, providing updates on progress with respect to Government programmes, while strengthening and sustaining existing and emerging linkages and foster collaborations to advance the socio-economic development programmes for the national economy.

Stemming from the past conferences, a number of mechanisms and structures have been developed to enhance the Diaspora’s involvement in Jamaica’s economic development.  These include the Diaspora Advisory Board which serves as an advisory body to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade on matters relevant to Diaspora engagement; the Jamaican Diaspora Foundation Limited and the Jamaican Diaspora Institute which aim to deepen collaboration among stakeholder groups and serve as a repository for research; and the Joint Select Committee of the Houses of Parliament which serves to guide a national approach on policies and strategies with respect to Diaspora matters.

Local community launches will continue in other overseas communities in North America, Canada and the United Kingdom at dates to be announced shortly. For further information, persons may contact the Jamaican Embassy in Washington D.C., or the Jamaican Consulates-General, located in Miami and New York.




Posted By :Ann- Margaret Lim

Company Name : Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade

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