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Senator The Honorable Pearnel Charles Jr., Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade

Strengthening Diaspora


ENGAGEMENT n March 2018, Senator The Honourable Pearnel

a four-pronged approach, aimed at strengthening the

Charles Jr. was appointed Minister of State in

linkages between Jamaicans abroad and those at home,

the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade

creating opportunities for investment and serving the

(MOFT) with responsibility for Diaspora Affairs.

needs of our Diaspora.

The Generation X minister says he’s intimately au fait with many of the interests and concerns of the diaspora having

The first approach is to strengthen the lines of

studied and lived overseas. He outlines the immediate

communication between Jamaica and the Diaspora. This

priorities of the MOFT to strengthen diaspora engagement,

move would capture data of the various demographics

contextualises diaspora impact and contributions to nation

in the Diaspora and assist in devising a strategic

building and highlights key investment opportunities for

communication plan to creatively engage these groups.

their continued support.

This would include maximizing the traditional media platforms to further connect to our people.

What are your goals and plans to further engage members of the Jamaican Diaspora?

Secondly, we are also striving to improve collaboration

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade holds

more efficient system for philanthropic donations.

among ministries, departments and agencies to create a

portfolio responsibility for Diaspora engagement. We recognise the immense talent, skills, boundless creativity

Thirdly, we will seek to facilitate the transfer of Diaspora

and ingenuity which are resident in the Diaspora. In order

skills and expertise for the development of local

to drive the engagement process forward, I have developed

communities and our nation as a whole.

32 CIJ FALL 2018

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Caribbean Insider, Jamaica Fall 2018