Monday, 4 December 2017

NEWS FEED: Cockpit Country now a specially protected area + National employment figures rise to all-time high + Digicel invests in new high-speed net technologies

AREA OF INTEREST: “The Government is of the view that this area is too valuable, in terms of its ecological and hydrological importance and uniqueness to allow mining, which may result in permanent and irreversible harm and deprive future generations of the benefits of this national asset,” declared PM Andrew Holness, while addressing Parliament on November 21 about safeguarding the 74, 726-hectare natural resource to be referred to from now on as The Cockpit Country Protected Area. According to the PM, the area will be protected under specific legislation as advised by the Attorney General. The Mining Act, he further noted, is to be amended. Of key interest to environmentalists and lobbyists, some of whom started an online petition, are the area’s forest reserves, significant hydrological/ecological features and cultural/heritage sites. 

LABOUR INTENSIVE: According to Director General of the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), Dr. Wayne Henry, Jamaica’s overall labour force rose by some 8,000 persons to 1, 371,300 as of July 2017. The number of females employed (for the corresponding period), he cited, stands at 538, 900. The figures were obtained from the latest Labour Force Survey done by the Statistical Institute (STATIN). “This out-turn in the number of employed persons continues the trend of establishing record levels of employment, observed since mid-2016,” Dr. Henry noted, while addressing a recent media briefing at PIOJ headquarters in New Kingston. “Prior to those increases, the previous record level of employment was registered in October 2008 at 1,174,500 persons.” Concerning the latest figures, Henry said the sub-sectors showing the largest increases were hotels and restaurants (up 11,000 persons), financial intermediation (up 6,700 persons) and wholesale and retail repair of motor vehicles and equipment (up 5,300 persons). 

PUSHING THE LIMITS: Telecomms giants Digicel has renewed its commitment to bolster its services islandwide by investing in the latest and best in modern technology. “Ten years ago, we brought a first-of-its-kind network to deliver high-speed broadband internet to traditionally neglected parts of Jamaica and we remain committed to delivering the best data speeds and service to all our customers islandwide," says Digicel Jamaica CEO, Justin Morin. “In keeping with our long-standing commitment to deepen internet penetration in Jamaica, we have been investing in rolling out new cutting-edge LTE technology to replace our Wi-Max network. LTE will deliver speeds up to 50 times faster for an amazing network experience. This transition to newer, faster, more modern technology is already happening as part of our 2030 transformation.”

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