SBAJ president optimistic of COVID-19 recovery

SBAJ president optimistic of COVID-19 recovery

Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Print this page Email A Friend!


Small Business Association of Jamaica (SBAJ) President Hugh Johnson expressed his confidence in the country's ability to recover from the effects of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

“We have a cadre of leaders instituting interventions, who I believe mean this country well. We should support them in whatever they are doing to safeguard Jamaica against the adverse effects of COVID-19,” he stated.

Meanwhile, Johnson says the challenges associated with the outbreak present “glorious opportunities” to further bolster and safeguard the local economy against potential external shocks relating to the virus and future related events.

He added that this is critical in light of the global outbreak, which has impacted countries that Jamaica largely depended on, among these, the US, Canada, the United Kingdom, and sections of mainland Europe.

“Already, we are seeing the immediate fallout in the local tourism sector and the impending fallout in remittances, two of the largest [foreign exchange] contributors to the economy. In light of this, we need to focus more on building our local economy because, currently, we are too vulnerable to external shocks,” Johnson contends.

While acknowledging that “you can't totally prevent imports” he nonetheless maintains that, “you can't be importing [up to] 85 per cent of all that you consume either”.

“I see where we can become a better and more productive nation [in the aftermath of the virus] because we would be getting the opportunity to make a fresh start, in a manner of speaking,” Johnson argued.

Donovan Wignall, president of the MSME Alliance, has also expressed confidence that the economy will be able to bounce back from the impact of COVID-19.

“There are some very valuable lessons being learned at this time about what is really essential and what isn't. Coming out of the crisis, a lot that has been adopted will remain. At our level, as businesses, we need to make sure that we have plans in place to recover. In fact, the country as a whole needs to take stock of what is happening and see how best we can prepare ourselves for anything like this that will occur in the future. Murphy's Law will say that it probably will, but we will be better prepared to handle it. If that approach is taken, we will have better businesses coming out of this crisis,” he stated.

He further added that local manufacturers are now presented with opportunities to fill the gap and meet demands that have been caused by COVID-19.


Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at http://bit.ly/epaperlive


ADVERTISEMENT




POST A COMMENT

HOUSE RULES

1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy



comments powered by Disqus
ADVERTISEMENT

Poll

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon
ADVERTISEMENT