Give Jamaicans Overseas More Access to Invest in Jamaica

Maureen Hayden-Cater says Give Jamaicans Overseas More Access to Invest in Jamaica

Maureen Hayden-Cater
Managing Director
JN Bank

KINGSTON, Jamaica – Maureen Hayden-Cater, managing director, JN Bank, one of the top three commercial banks in Jamaica, says the country must move to establish more concrete avenues for Jamaicans in the Diaspora to contribute to the development of the nation, if it truly intends to garner overseas support for economic success.

Acknowledging the work of government, under the auspices of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade and Jamaica Trade and Invest (JAMPRO); the Diaspora Advisory Board and corporate groups, she said there are many opportunities for the financial sector in Jamaica to increase direct partnerships and engagement of the Jamaican Diaspora.

Speaking against the background of JN Bank’s recent launch of its JN Diaspora Certificate of Deposit, she maintained that many persons in the Diaspora are prepared to invest; however, they are often unable to identify the specific products, services and information they need.

“We should be willing and prepared to design products and services that are exclusive to Jamaicans overseas; and provide the avenues that allow them to further contribute to the development of the country,” the JN Bank managing director underscored, pointing to 2013 data published by InfoDev for the World Bank which shows that a quarter of Jamaicans in the Diaspora have investable wealth or annual earnings of US$100,000 or more. More than 70 per cent are interested in investing in start-ups and small and medium-sized enterprises and 63 per cent are also interested in Diaspora bonds.

“We have to recognise that Jamaica is not simply an island of some 2.7 million people, we are much bigger and expansive than that!” she declared.

The JN Diaspora Certificate of Deposit, available in the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and Canadian currencies, was launched last month; and was among the products and services on display for some 5,000 Jamaicans in Canada who patronised the recently held JN Group Expo in Brampton, Ontario.

The product uniquely allows for a portion of the interest earned by the certificate of deposit to be used to fund social enterprises operating in the micro, small and medium enterprise sector. The sector is responsible for about a third of the country’s employment.

“What makes this an even more distinctive product is the fact that, the businesses to benefit are those which are operating as social enterprises, which are businesses established for a social good; and generate employment and economic sustainability for certain communities and groups of people,” she explained.

She further noted that two per cent of the interest income earned by individual investors will be matched by JN Bank and contributed to social enterprises engaged in the JN Foundation‘s Social Enterprise Boost Initiative (SEBI).

The instrument is tenured from one to five years; and starts at £1,000, CA$1,000, or US$2,000. Interest at the top end of the longest terms on these investments range from 1.5 percent in pounds; 1.1 percent in Canadian dollars; to 1.8 percent in US dollars.

However, Mrs Hayden Cater says that beyond specific products and services targeted to the Diaspora, clearer and more defined efforts must be made to engage them in their respective communities; and not only when they visit Jamaica.

Referencing the recent JN Group Expo in Brampton, Ontario, which was attended by some 5,000 patrons, she underscored that there is a great demand for information among Jamaicans overseas.

“There are many opportunities to strengthen ties with our nationals overseas, but we need to create the context to engage them, so that they can receive current information; ask penetrating questions; and attain the right perception about Jamaica, its economic status; and the opportunities that are available,” she maintained.

“We need to recognise that Jamaicans in the Diaspora are an important constituent in our economic fabric; and, therefore, we should make it easier for interested persons to access information about investment opportunities in Jamaica,” Mrs Hayden Cater concluded.

Posted in: Business
  • xedos

    I don’t know if I have the tolerance to deal with Jamaica. I have account and Mortgage with JN. I went into their Ocho Rios branch to get a bank card . my first one . it took me almost 4hrs to get that card i answer more question that the US immigration ask me to get a green card.. I have a passport a driver’s license and was still put through the wringer. even over my signature my passport was almost 5 yrs old how the hell do you think i’m going to sign my signature the same way every time?
    I try to get a Jamaican passport and what they put me through i give up. I have all my papers from birth certificate all the papers notarized by lawyers they would not give it to me because North America government drop one of my middle name. and i don’t have a Jamaican ID with my name . My wife could not get her’s for the same reason. she has her drivers license but her middle name was only an initial I brought my brother to vouch for me he shows his drivers license. they said he needs to have his birth certificate.I’m done with the madness. all they care about is the remittance.

    • Good Afternoon @xedos:disqus,

      Thank you for sharing your feedback regarding our service, especially during your visit to our branch in Ocho Rios.

      We are very interested in having a conversation with you regarding this experience, as well as to reinforce our commitment to serving you better.
      We would appreciate if you would be willing to forward your contact information to us by sending an email to memberservices@jnbank.com. Please make reference to this article.
      We look forward to hearing from you.

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