Henry seeks support

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

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MINISTER of Transport and Mining Mike Henry has appealed to public transport operators to join his efforts to review the National Transport Policy (NTP), which has been in effect since 2007.

Henry made his appeal to operators attending their second annual capacity building development meeting in Portmore, St Catherine, on Sunday.

He informed the operators that at the three-day Cabinet retreat at Jamaica House, which ended Friday night, approval was given for his ministry to review the 10-year-old policy.

He said that the planned changes would include the merger of the Island Traffic Authority and the Transport Authority into a single body.

According to him, the merger will “erase any blurred lines between the responsibilities of both organisations, and lead to a more efficient and sustainable service”.

The minister urged the transport operators to provide information which could guide in developing a policy that covers all stakeholders in the sector.

He also reaffirmed that his door is always open for discussions, which are necessary in order to make meaningful impact through the input of the stakeholders.

Henry also addressed expected benefits of the proposed Portmore Transportation Hub to commuters and transport operators. He said a transportation centre should cater to all modes of public transportation, as well as the needs of its users.

He stated that he expects full support form operators and reiterated his commitment to having the Road Traffic Act passed this year.

The NTP aims, fundamentally, at supporting sustainable economic growth and social development, by ensuring the promulgation of a public transportation framework within which the transport infrastructure and services can be used efficiently by the Government and other stakeholders.

It also aims to give the private sector confidence in investing in, and improving the transport sector.

Among the key priorities is also encouraging greater private sector participation in the sector.

The policy is to be developed with a focus on providing opportunities for the private sector to participate with confidence in the development of transport infrastructure and sustainable transport systems in Jamaica.

It also aims to have users contribute to the costs of transport services; create policy awareness and further participation in policy development; increase access to reliable and efficient transport services, in both urban and rural areas; ensure safety and security of transport services; and support the reduction in fuel importation.

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