Jamaica waiver duty to stay

Jamaica waiver duty to stay
Published: 27 August 2009

Jamaica will retain the duty waiver for importers of cement but has reserved a larger portion of the market for the Rockfort-based monopoly producer.

Carib Cement was pressing to reclaim 100 per cent of the market, but Karl Samuda said Tuesday he would give them a secure 80 per cent, while importers would have the remaining 20 per cent, which becomes effective after September 9.

The decision has to be approved by Caricom before Jamaica can claim it a done deal.

The waiver, if approved, would extend the hold that Government first placed on the 15 per cent Common External Tariff on cement imports three years ago.

The importers’ share, however, has been cut by five per cent from 25 per cent under the 2008 waiver, which allowed them then to supply up to 240,000 tonnes to the local market.

The 20 per cent will allow 170,000t to enter duty free.