Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Anthony Hylton, has given the Government’s commitment to continue to work towards ensuring that more local companies can gain access to overseas markets. He made the comment during a tour of Rainforest Seafoods’ new state-of-the-art facilities on Friday (January 25) on Slipe Pen Road in Kingston, where he lauded the company’s efforts towards gaining access to markets in the European Union (EU) and other parts of the world. He said the Government fully supports these endeavours. “The challenge now is for us to really believe in ourselves to empower and invest in our workforce, continually improve our export performance in an increasingly competitive international environment, and to demonstrate…excellence,” he stated. The Minister commended Rainforest on opening the 30,000 square foot processing plant, which he said is a major step forward for the company and Jamaica. “The opening of this facility means the creation of at least 100 new jobs. This investment will anchor the company in Jamaica for the foreseeable future, thereby contributing to the further creation of employment and export opportunities,” Mr. Hylton said. “I want to say thank you to the Rainforest team for your continuous faith in Jamaica, for sustaining your investment and presence here throughout the years, and for putting your hearts and your money into this project,” Mr. Hylton stated. Chief Executive Officer of Rainforest Seafoods, Brian Jardim, said he was “very excited” about the prospects of the new processing plant. “It has been our labour of love for almost three years and what you see today is the very early stages of our production,” Mr. Jardim said. Rainforest Seafoods is the Caribbean’s largest supplier of premium quality fish and seafood. From its two large distribution centres strategically located in Kingston and Montego Bay, the company supplies domestic and Caribbean markets. It distributes over 400 types of fish and assorted shellfish sourced from recognised suppliers around the world in both fresh and frozen forms. Currently, the business sells frozen and raw products to nine islands across the Caribbean. A total of $1billion has been invested in the Slipe Pen Road facility.