KINGSTON, JAMAICA — The Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ) has emphasized the importance of prioritizing training and upskilling Jamaican workers to support economic growth, especially in growing sectors like tourism and business process outsourcing (BPO).
PIOJ Director General Wayne Henry noted ongoing initiatives to develop local talent and move workers into higher-value roles to improve productivity. He suggests continued focus on existing training programs rather than importing foreign labor.
The government aims to upskill citizens to capitalize on new opportunities and boost competitiveness. This requires expanded access to training in areas like IT, healthcare, and software engineering.
Partnerships between schools, industry, and agencies are critical, according to Henry. Programs like the Jamaica Centre for Tourism Innovation provide specialized certifications for tourism workers.
Henry stated that upskilling will empower more people to obtain quality jobs and enable firms to enhance productivity.
Jamaica faces labor shortages as its economy recovers post-pandemic. Upskilling can ensure workers have the expertise to meet labor demand. It will also increase incomes, lower unemployment, and promote inclusive growth.