Jamaica - Country Commercial Guide
Machinery and Transport Equipment

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country.  Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2022-07-13

Overview

U.S. brands enjoy significant goodwill in the Jamaican market, underpinned by a long tradition of safety and quality.  However, Jamaicans are increasingly price sensitive, leading to a diversion of trade to cheaper competitors.  This notwithstanding, machinery built in the U.S. remains visible at construction sites, large farms, and industrial facilities and until the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic there was an uptick in imports from the United States.  There is still a strong market for telecommunications and data related products, batteries, and electrical components.  Right-handed vehicles out of Japan and Europe continue to dominate the market, but the United States remains a major source market for auto parts and accessories.  Jamaicans have been slow to transition to electric vehicles (EV) due to the absence of an enabling environment and the requisite infrastructure.  However, as of the first quarter of the 2022/23 fiscal year (April to June), the government will incentivize the purchase of  1,000 electric vehicles annually by reducing the import duty from 30 to 10 percent for an initial five-year period. Effective June 13, 2022, lithium-ion batteries imported for use in solar application are exempt from payment of General Consumption Tax.

Machinery & Transport Equipment ($M) 2019 2020 2021 2022 Est
Total Local Production N/A N/A N/A N/A
Total Exports 24 24 15 N/A
Total Imports 1464 1112 1196 N/A
Imports from the US 505 383 439 N/A
Total Market Size N/A N/A N/A N/A
Exchange Rates 134.22 143.27 151.62 N/A

(total market size = (total local production + imports) – exports); *N/A indicates no data are available

Source: STATIN

Leading Sub-Sectors

Best prospects include rims, shock absorbers, clutch and brake parts, tires, and general accessories.

Opportunities

Jamaican authorities monitor the quality of the imports and this scrutiny increases opportunities for new higher quality aftermarket auto parts.  The increasing use of liquified natural gas (LNG) and renewables in the energy mix and the emergence of e-mobility could also provide additional opportunities for products associated with energy and transportation industries.

Chronic machine breakdowns and overlong downtime for repairs, the Ministry of Health and Wellness is exploring the option of leasing medical equipment instead of making purchases as they do not have the technical capacity for efficient maintenance.  As a result, thousands of public sector clients have to wait weeks or months for intervention.