Ministry of Finance and the Public Service to launch Jamaica InvestmentMapFriday, October 30, 2020
KINGSTON, Jamaica — The Ministry of Finance and the Public Service will host a public launch of the Jamaica InvestmentMap, an online tool that will make publicly accessible current information on Government of Jamaica's public investment projects such as the construction of roads, bridges and schools, support to agricultural initiatives, government reform and climate resilience projects.
The ministry said this initiative is the result of a partnership between the Government of Jamaica and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).
It will be launched on Wednesday, November 4, 2020.
According to the ministry, at least six IDB member countries — including Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica and Paraguay---have launched InvestmentMap platforms in recent years. It said Jamaica will be the first country in the English speaking Caribbean to launch this platform.
The platform will be launched during the virtual public event at 10:00 am. During the event, the link to the InvestmentMap will be made publicly available, and thereafter Jamaicans will be able to access information of 70 government capital expenditure projects which are currently included in GOJ's Public Sector Investment Programme.
The ministry said the platform presents the information in a georeferenced format which also gives citizens the opportunity to search projects based on sector, parish and county. It noted that it will display the associated value, progress, photographs of deliverables and other outputs as well as other data about the projects. It will also include a citizen participation module, which allows citizens to provide feedback on projects of interest.
“Most of the information to be contained in the platform has always been available. However, true transparency in government goes beyond something being available but not widely accessible. It requires the government going the extra mile and making the information easily available and understandable for its citizens; this is the value added being provided by the Jamaica Public InvestmentMap,” Finance Minister Dr Nigel Clarke said.
Dr Clarke added that, “As Minister of Finance, I am not only interested in transparency in government because it is the right thing to do, but also because there is a clear correlation between transparency and efficiency. A policy maker, civil servant or any productive individual is further incentivised by the fact that the products of his or her labour are available for review and interrogation on an ongoing basis. That individual has a greater reason to ensure that his or her projects are run efficiently and effectively, within the limit of the contextual constraint.”
The ministry said an IDB study on implementation of the InvestmentMap in Colombia, found an 8 per cent increase in the efficiency of execution of projects included in the platform. It noted that this is critical, particularly in these difficult times, when the current coronavirus pandemic has made any waste or misuse of government resources even more unacceptable.
“I am under no illusion that this will be the solution to all of our problems. On the contrary, I understand that building transparency in government requires continued work over many administrations, as well as a simultaneous focus on the strengthening of institutions,” the minister said.
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