THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
MORE BILATERAL TRADE COLLABORATION PLANNED FOR CHINA AND JAMAICA
Audley Shaw, Jamaica’s Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, has made a commitment to exploring the potential of greater cooperation with the Chinese government in some areas of trade, particularly involving pork exports to China. Shaw and Tian Qi, the Chinese Ambassador to Jamaica, discussed the issue during a virtual meeting on October 30, 2020. Emphasizing the long-standing trade relationship between China and Jamaica, Shaw also noted that China is Jamaica’s fourth-largest trading partner and the largest trading partner among the nations of the English-speaking Caribbean. Jamaican wants to expand the export of products like rum, coffee, and lobster to China, as well as tuna and pork exports.
BUSINESS INTERESTS AND RESIDENTS OFFER FAINT SUPPORT FOR HEROES PARK PROJECT
The plan for the Jamaican government to move the Parliament building to National Heroes Park and to transform the communities surrounding that location has garnered only lukewarm support from residents and businesses. Forty percent of individuals surveyed said they preferred a different use for the space, while 60 percent of the survey respondents were in favor of the project. Residents prefer expanding and renewing the green space into a park like Emancipation Park in New Kingston, while businesses favor a sports complex. The lack of strong favorability was attributed to respondents’ lack of “informed knowledge” about the project, surveyors stated.
THIS WEEK’S TOP CARIBBEAN NEWS
CARIBBEAN AMERICANS DECLARED VICTORS IN MANY NEW YORK STATE ELECTIONS
Most of the Caribbean American legislators running for office in New York on November 3, 2020, were victorious, according to unofficial results from the New York State Board of Elections. Democratic Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke, who is the daughter of Jamaica immigrants, won her re-election campaign with a landslide vote. She represents the chiefly Caribbean 9th Congressional District in Brooklyn. She had called on voters to stand with her in an effort to defeat Donald Trump. Other Caribbean American legislators who won in New York included Phara Souffrant, daughter of Haitian immigrants; Diana Richardson, daughter of immigrants from St. Marten and Aruba; Kimberly Jean-Pierre, a Haitian American; Michaelle C. Solages, a Haitian American; Jamaican N. Nick Perry, Haitian American Rodneyse Bichotte; and Jamaican-born State Senator Leroy G. Comrie Jr.
THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
NEW SOCIAL MEDIA SITE LINKING JAMAICA WITH DIASPORA LAUNCHES IN KINGSTON
Jamaica-Linc, a website that celebrates Brand Jamaica, is now in operation with the goal of connecting the island with the Jamaican Diaspora in order to strengthen relationships between Jamaicans and those who appreciate its culture regardless of where on the globe they live. The site was conceived by Wyyolyn Gager, the former editor-in-chief of The Gleaner newspaper. According to Gager, he has been thinking about creating a portal with news, culture, and sports links that would appeal to Jamaicans both at home and abroad. The site’s main strength is its ability to tell interesting stories about the island and individuals in the Diaspora, said Gager.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS
JAMAICAN GOVERNMENT PLANS TO OBTAIN 268 MEGAWATTS OF ENERGY FROM RENEWABLE SOURCES BY 2025
According to Daryl Vaz, Jamaica’s Minister of Science, Energy, and Technology, plans to get as many as 268 megawatts of electricity from renewable sources by 2025 are moving forward. The plan includes obtaining energy from solar, wind, hydro, biomass, and waste technologies. Vaz said it is a priority for him to establish the Generation Procurement Entity and to expedite the process of procurement through definition of the rules and protocols governing it. The stated renewable energy target is within the boundaries established in the Integrated Resource Plan, a 20-year-old plan addressing the island’s electricity investment environment.
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
POPULAR REGGAE SUNSPLASH FESTIVAL WILL GO VIRTUAL IN 2020
In 2020, Jamaica’s popular Reggae Sunsplash event will be staged virtually on November 27 and 28. The staging will be managed by iCreate, a digital and creative institute. The virtual program will be offered in response to conditions arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Virtual Reggae Sunsplash, sponsored chiefly by Visa and the Jamaica Tourist Board, will be streamed on YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram, which will make the festival available to people around the world. Tyrone Wilson, the executive producer of the event, said he is grateful to be able to offer this authentic Jamaican experience to the world, and some adjustments had to be made for COVID-19, the staging of the unique performance event will still be enjoyable to its fans. Other event partners include KFC, FLOW, Rumbar, Dragon, Clear Sounds and Kaboom. Betco, the wine distributor, will offer a unique viewing experience at more than 20 venues across the island, while meeting all COVID-19 protocols and curfew hours.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
JAMAICA’S ELAINE THOMPSON-HERAH NOMINATED FOR FEMALE ATHLETE OF THE YEAR AWARD
Double-gold medalist Elaine Thompson-Herah, 28, expressed her pride at being nominated for the title of Female Athlete of the Year for 2020 by World Athletics. The track star won two gold medals at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janiero. She is one of ten nominees selected by a global panel of athletics experts representing the six continental areas of World Athletics. Thompson-Herah said she is honored to be included with “these nine other incredibly talented ladies.” During the season, she was undefeated over seven races and ran a world-leading time of 10.85 seconds in the 100 meters at the Diamond League meet in Rome, Italy. She also ran the distance with a time of 10.87 seconds at Doha at the end of the season. The other nominees for Female Athlete of the Year are Venezuela’s Yulimar Rojas, Femke Bol of the Netherlands, Letesenbet Gidey of Ethiopia, Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands, Peres Jepchirchir from Kenya, Faith Kipyegon of Kenya, Laura Muir of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Helen Obiri of Kenya, and Ababel Yeshaneh of Ethiopia. Thompson-Herah is the only Jamaican nominated on either the female or male athlete of the year lists.