Vision 2030 Jamaica - National Development Plan

National urban policy type
Partial - National Development Policy
Policy temporality

"Vision 2030 Jamaica is our country’s first long-term National Development Plan which aims to put Jamaica in a position to achieve developed country status by 2030. It is based on a comprehensive vision: “Jamaica, the place of choice to live, work, raise families, and do business”.
This envisages a major transformation from a middle income developing country to one which affords its citizens a high quality of life and world-class standards in critical areas including education, health care, nutrition, basic amenities, access to environmental goods and services, civility and social order." (Executive Summary, p.XXII)

Vision 2030 Jamaica also sets out strategic sector plans, including on Urban and Regional Development Planning.

Validity date

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Constitutional rights (articles)
Art. 13

Fundamental rights and freedoms  2.        The rights and freedoms referred to in subsection (2) are as follows-  a.        the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in the execution of the sentence of a court in respect of a c...


Formulating Institution

Planning Institute of Jamaica

Elaboration process

Vision 2030 Jamaica - National Development Plan was prepared with the invaluable contribution, dedication and commitment of the Jamaican people, at home and in the Diaspora (…). The PIOJ thanks all those who contributed their resources, time and intellect to initiate, prepare and finalize the Plan, including: the Government of Jamaica and the Opposition which mandated and guided the process; the Ministries, Departments and Agencies; the Cabinet Office; the many stakeholders (...). (p.XIV)

Executive Body

The Cabinet has ultimate responsibility for implementation of the National Development Plan, and will be responsible to Parliament for reporting on the implementation and coordination of Vision 2030 Jamaica. The Planning Institute of Jamaica is the Technical Secretariat for the National Development Plan (...) (Executive Summary, p.XXXIV)


Definition of City

There is not definition included in the document.

**The Population and Housing Census (2011) defines the city as "A place is considered to be urban if it has a population of 2,000 or more persons and provides a number of amenities and facilities which in Jamaica indicate modern living."
(Press Release Census)

Main challenge

"National Outcome # 14: Hazard Risk Reduction and Adaptation to Climate Change
Issues and Challenges:

  • Settlement Patterns
  • Population growth, uncontrolled urbanization and rural and urban poverty have contributed to the development of unplanned settlements in marginal and environmentally sensitive lands (flood plains and unstable slopes). (...) Settlement patterns and location of major infrastructure along the coast increase vulnerability to hazard impacts. (p. 245)

National Outcome # 15: Sustainable Urban and Rural Development
Issues and Challenges:

  • Fragmented Nature of the Planning System
  • Inadequate Capacity at the Institutional Level
  • Lack of Robustness of the Planning System
  • Squatting
  • Low Level of Awareness of the Benefits of Spatial Planning" (p. 253)    
Urban focus

Urban instrument

National Outcome # 15 : Sustainable Urban and Rural Development

Urban dimension of policy

National Outcome # 15 : Sustainable Urban and Rural Development
The Plan proposes a spatial arrangement of land use that facilitates social and economic development, respects the environment and satisfies the need for safety, efficiency, aesthetics and social justice. We will encourage the development of new and progressive legislation to reflect the country’s changing demands, and a modernized planning system, including clarification and strengthening of the roles of the various agencies involved in physical planning. (...) Vision 2030 Jamaica will encourage the development of new and progressive legislation to reflect the country’s changing demands, including clarification of the roles of the various agencies involved in physical planning. It will also address a range of issues including housing affordability, housing finance, land supply and management, water availability, and urban decay. (p.253)

Main objective of the urban dimension

"15-2 Create an Appropriate Framework for Sustainability Planning
Vision 2030 Jamaica is designed to facilitate and promote sustainable patterns of urban and rural development – making suitable land available for development in line with economic, social and environmental objectives to improve our citizens’ quality of life. (...) The success of this National Strategy will be measured by the development and implementation of local sustainable development plans in all parishes, and improved citizen participation at the local level. (p.257)

15-3 Create Sustainable Urban Centres, Including Urban Renewal and Upgrading
Vision 2030 Jamaica will create sustainable urban centres underpinned by urban growth management strategies. It will design policies that minimize urban sprawl, create order and strengthen the critical elements of social capital vital to urban community development.  Focus will be placed on urban renewal and upgrading, and conservation and renewal of heritage sites located in urban centres. (p.258)

15-5 Ensure Safe, Sanitary and Affordable Shelter for All 
(...) The Plan embodies the concept that shelter represents a broad continuum of affordable and appropriate housing options related to the income of target groups. It is proposed that, by the year 2030, every Jamaican will be living in a well constructed dwelling unit that is safe, sanitary and affordable and in an inclusive and aesthetically pleasing community (...). (p258)"            

Urban strategic objectives

"13-1 Integrate Environmental Issues in Economic and Social Decision-Making Policies and Processes
Selected Sector Strategies:

  • Develop mechanisms that effectively integrate environmental management in land use planning, especially as it relates to urban planning, regional development and sectoral strategies (p.240, punto 3).

National Outcome #15 Sustainable Urban and Rural Development

National strategies:

15.1 Create a comprehensive and efficient planning system
Selected Sector Strategies:

  • Develop and adopt mechanisms for better integration of spatial models and tools in decision-making
  • Implement transparency and accountability mechanisms and improve congruence among different levels of planning
  • Develop and popularize documented procedures and standards for planning
  • Rationalize the roles and responsibilities of agencies and entities involved in planning
  • Improve the level of awareness of the benefits of planning
  • Strengthen capacity for monitoring and enforcement, including using multiple methods of monitoring for example, using community groups
  • Strengthen and deepen the mechanisms to provide secure land tenure through expansion of land titling programmes
  • Improve systems and procedures to enhance efficiency

15.2. Create an appropriate system for sustainability planning.
Selected Sector Strategies:

  • Integrate sustainability principles into land use planning and design
  • Integrate energy conservation into housing and transportation planning
  • Design and develop communities to be in harmony with the natural environment
  • Ensure that development decisions are guided by a spatial planning framework (national physical plan) 
  • Establish inter-agency frameworks for sustainability planning
  • Fully implement the Local Sustainable Development Planning Framework
  • Improve citizen participation in decision-making through Local Sustainable Development Planning
  • Create sustainable communities
  • Accelerate development of strategic regional centres to ensure that they play a key role in balancing development
  • Link investment with development objectives
  • Introduce reforms in land utilization and management
  • Review existing land use patterns, zoning regulations, building codes and standards in the context of housing and urban development needs and formulate forward- looking land use and development polices for efficient and optimum utilization of land

15.3. Create sustainable urban centers, including urban renewal and upgrading.
Selected Sector Strategies:

  • Develop growth scenarios for main urban centres
  • Create green urban centres with ecologically friendly buildings, construction, and transport systems
  • Formulate and implement integrated land use and transport policies for urban growth management (e.g. “smart growth”)
  • Design policies to minimize sprawl and encourage compact development, infill and redevelopment
  • Encourage private reinvestment in older neighbourhoods and private rehabilitation of housing
  • Facilitate urban renewal and conservation of historic sites and cultural heritage
  • Improve the physical environment to create orderly and beautiful communities
  • Formulate urban designs that enhance safety, contribute to a sense of place and encourage social interaction
  • Reverse the process of degradation and decay in urban areas
  • Increase access to housing and social amenities
  • Increase accessibility to inner city communities
  • Develop facilities for recreation and social interaction

15.5. Ensure safe, sanitary and affordable shelter for all. 
Selected Sector Strategies:

  • Integrate national housing and urban development planning to enable access to adequate shelter and services to all
  • Create mechanisms for all income groups and persons with specialized needs to access shelter
  • Locate housing settlements in areas that minimize vulnerability to natural hazards
  • Ensure access by all communities to a minimum standard of support services and amenities, including potable water, sewerage and waste disposal services
  • Strengthen housing and infrastructure financing through partnership arrangements from public, private and individual sources
  • Encourage a mix of residential development types
  • Develop the land and housing market including the rentals market
  • Develop alternative housing types and construction techniques that enhance the long-term usability and affordability of housing
  • Develop housing opportunities for those with specialized needs"

(pg. 257-260)

Implementation tool

Operating instruments

The Plan will be implemented through a series of 3-yearly Medium Term Socio- Economic Policy Frameworks (MTFs) underpinned by a results-based monitoring and evaluation mechanism that establishes specific targets and indicators to measure and track performance. 
The 31 sector plans provide the framework for implementation at the sectoral level and also represent the basis on which the MTFs are developed. (p.XXXIV)  

Action against climate change

Mitigation, adaptation and resilience actions are promoted by Vision 2040 in Jamaica.


"14-4 Contribute to the Effort to Reduce Global Rate of Climate Change
Selected Sector Strategies:

  • Promote energy conservation and non-carbon-based forms of energy (see National Outcome # 10 on Energy Security and Efficiency)
  • Reduce deforestation rate through mechanisms such as reforestation programmes
  • Conduct research on Jamaica’s levels and sources of greenhouse gas emissions with a view to further reducing the emissions
  • Promote the use of clean technologies in the manufacturing sector (related to National Strategy 12-5)
  • Maximize the benefits of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) under the Kyoto Protocol
  • Lobby at the international level for high greenhouse gas-producing countries to become more energy and resource efficient"



"14-3 Develop Measures to Adapt to Climate Change
Selected Sector Strategies:

  • Create mechanisms to fully consider the impacts of climate change and ‘climate proof’ all national policies and plans
  • Identify strategic priorities for adaptation to climate change
  • Undertake research to identify sector-specific strategies for adaptation
  • Promote education and discussionabout climate change through local and community media
  • Adopt best practices for climate change adaptation
  • Infuse climate change issues intothe physical planning system
  • Create and introduce economic and financial market instruments for risk transfer
  • Apply disaster risk reduction framework to build on climate change mitigation measures"

(pg. 251)            


"14-1 Improve resilience against all forms of hazards
Selected Sector Strategies:

  • Create and strengthen national platforms and establish the foundation for hazard risk reduction by engaging in multi- stakeholder dialogue
  • Use predictive tools for modelling, hazard data mapping and risk assessment
  • Modernize the legal framework related to hazard risk reduction
  • Create and introduce economic and financial market instruments for risk transfer
  • Use knowledge, innovation and education to build a culture of safety and resilience at all levels by integrating hazard risk reduction in the early childhood, pre-primary, primary, secondary and tertiary education syllabuses and research community; and develop hazard risk reduction training for different groups of stakeholders
  • Adopt a community-based approach to hazard risk reduction
  • Expand early warning systems to reduce the risk of hazards
  • Incorporate hazard risk reduction in environmental and natural resources management
  • Establish mechanisms for increasing resilience of the poor and most vulnerable
  • Establish measures to incorporate hazard risk reduction in land-use practices and human settlements
  • Create opportunities for private sector involvement in hazard risk reduction, including business contingency planning
  • Design housing settlements that are not vulnerable to hazards based on construction and rehabilitation techniques that enhance the long term usability
  • Regulate the importation, storage, distribution, use and disposal (the management cycle) of hazardous materials"

(pg. 250)            


Main goal

Vision 2030 Jamaica is our country’s first long-term National Development Plan which aims to put Jamaica in a position to achieve developed country status by 2030. It is based on a comprehensive vision: “Jamaica, the place of choice to live, work, raise families, and do business”. (Executive Summary, p. XXII)    

Cross-cutting principles

"Guiding Principles: It is based on seven Guiding Principles which put people at the centre of Jamaica’s development. These are: transformational leadership; partnership; transparency and accountability; social cohesion; equity; sustainability; and urban and rural development . They give priority attention to elements that are essential to delivering a world-class quality of life for all Jamaicans, and reflect the key pillars of change needed to realize the Vision for our nation" (p.12).

Strategic objectives

The National Goals and Outcomes (Executive Summary, p. XV, Figure 1)

1. Jamaicans are empowered to achieve their fullest potential
1. A Healthy and Stable Population
2. World-Class Education and Training
3. Effective Social Protection
4. Authentic Transformational Culture

2. The Jamaican society is safe, cohesive and just
5. Security and Safety
6. Effective Governance

3. Jamaica’s economy is prosperous
7. A Stable Macroeconomy 
8. An Enabling Business Economy
9. Strong Economic Infrastructure
10. Energy Security and Efficiency
11. A Technology-Enabled Society
12. Internationally Competitive Industry Strategies 

4. Jamaica has a healthy natural environment
13. Sustainable Management and Use of Natural Resources
14. Hazard Risk Reduction and Adaptation to Climate Change 
15. Sustainable Urban and Rural Development

Action Strategies

National Outcome 1: A Healthy and Stable Population
National Strategies:

  • Maintain a stable population
  • Strengthen disease surveillance, mitigation, risk reduction and the responsiveness of the health system
  • Strengthen the Health Promotion Approach
  • Strengthen and emphasize the primary health care approach
  • Provide and maintain an adequate health infrastructure to ensure efficient and cost effective service delivery
  • Establish and implement a sustainable mechanism for human resources
  • Establish effective governance mechanisms for supporting health services
  • Support national food security
  • Strengthen the linkages between health and the environment
  • Introduce a programme for sustainable financing of health care

National Outcome 2: World-Class Education and Training
National Strategies:

  • Ensure that children 0-8 years old have access to adequate early childhood education and development programmes
  • Enable a satisfactory learning environment at the primary level
  • Ensure that the secondary school system equips school leavers to access further education, training and/or decent work
  • Accelerate the process of creating and implementing a standards-driven and outcomes-based education system
  • Develop and establish financing and management mechanisms for schools
  • Ensure a physical environment in all schools that is safe and conducive to learning at all levels of the school system
  • Ensure that adequate and high quality tertiary education is provided with an emphasis on the interface with work and school
  • Expand mechanisms to provide access to education and training for all, including unattached youth
  • Promote a culture of learning among the general populace
  • Establish a National Qualification Framework
  • Strengthen mechanisms to align training with demands of the labour market

National Outcome 3: Effective Social Protection
National strategies:

  • Infuse poverty and vulnerable issues in all public policies
  • Expand opportunities for the poor to engage in sustainable livelihoods
  • Create and sustain an effective, efficient, transparent and objective system for delivering social assistance services and programmes
  • Promote greater participation in, and viability of social insurance and pension schemes

National Outcome 4: Authentic and Transformational Culture
National Strategies:

  • Promote core / transformational values
  • Promote the family as the central unit of human development
  • Preserve, develop and promote Jamaica’s cultural heritage
  • Integrate Jamaica’s nation brand into developmental processes
  • Strengthen the role of sport in all aspects of national development

National Outcome 5: Security and Safety 
National strategies:

  • Strengthen the capacity of communities to participate in creating a safe and secure society 
  • Reform and modernize the law enforcement system 
  • Improve the security of the border and territorial waters 
  • Strengthen the anti-crime capability of law enforcement agencies 
  • Strengthen the management, rehabilitation and reintegration of clients of correctional services

National Outcome 6: Effective governance
National strategies:

  • Strengthen the process of citizen participation in governance 
  • Reform the justice system 
  • Ensure tolerance and respect for human rights and freedoms 
  • Engage in constitutional reform 
  • Strengthen public institutions to deliver efficient and effective public goods and services
  • Foster equity in all areas of the society
  • Strengthen accountability and transparency mechanisms 

National Outcome 7: A Stable Economy 
National Strategies:

  • Ensure fiscal and debt sustainability 
  • Develop an efficient and equitable tax system
  • Maintain financial system stability
  • Maintain price stability 

National outcome 8: An Enabling Business Environment
National Strategies:

  • Ensure a facilitating policy, regulatory and institutional framework for business development
  • Increase access to capital
  • Use trade and foreign relations to create an enabling external environment for economic growth 
  • Strengthen investment promotion and trade facilitation
  • Develop an efficient labour market
  • Improve the labour environment to enhance labour productivity and worker satisfaction
  • Develop the capabilities of Micro, Small and Medium- Sized Enterprises 

National Outcome 9: Strong Economic Infrastructure
National Strategies:

  • Expand and rationalize land transport and infrastructure services 
  • Develop a modernized public transport system 
  • Expand domestic and international air transport infrastructure and services 
  • Expand and diversify maritime infrastructure and services 
  • Develop Jamaica as a regional logistics hub with multimodal transport linkages 
  • Expand the broadband network island-wide 
  • Ensure adequate and safe water supply and sanitation services 

National Outcome 10: Energy Security and Efficiency 
National Strategies:

  • Diversify the energy supply 
  • Promote energy efficiency and conservation 

National Outcome 11: A technology-Enabled Society 
National Strategies:

  • Integrate science and technology into all areas of development 
  • Create a dynamic and responsive National Innovation System 

National Outcome 12: Internationally Competitive Industry Structures
National Strategies:

  • Develop company sophistication and productivity 
  • Develop economic linkages and clusters 
  • Develop economies of scale and scope through collaboration among enterprises in the region 
  • Enhance the framework for competition among enterprises 
  • Promote eco-efficiency and the green economy 

National Outcome 13: Sustainable Management and Use of Environmental and Natural Resources
National Strategies:

  • Integrate environmental issues in economic and social decision-making policies and processes
  • Develop and implement mechanisms for biodiversity conservation and ecosystems management 
  • Develop efficient and effective governance structures for environmental management 
  • Manage all forms of waste effectively 

National Strategies 14: Hazard Risk Reduction and Adaptation to Climate Change 
National Strategies:

  • Improve resilience to all forms of hazards 
  • Improve emergency response capability 
  • Develop measures to adapt to climate change
  • Contribute to the effort to reduce the global rate of climate change

National Outcome 15: Sustainable Urban and Rural Development
National Strategies

  • Create a comprehensive and efficient planning system 
  • Create an appropriate framework for sustainability planning
  • Create sustainable urban centres, including urban renewal and upgrading 
  • Create vibrant and diversified rural areas 
  • Ensure safe, sanitary and affordable shelter for all 

(Figure 1: Vision, Goals and Outcomes, page XV)


Vision 2030 Jamaica has a Gender Sectoral Plan, which states: The achievement of gender equality, equity and women’s empowerment are accepted development goals and essential planks for Jamaica to become a developed country by 2030. Gender is assumed here as a crosscutting issue which undergirds the fact that women and men have different problems and therefore different needs in areas such as governance, the economy, health, education. [...] The Gender Plan has been developed to address structural and societal factors that place men and women in unequal positions in various spheres of society. The Plan seeks to draft, develop and implement policies, laws, institutions and approaches that will encourage and support equity between men and women and inculcate wholesome attitudes in society that will prevent gender discrimination and various forms of abuse that are gender- based.

The Plan's goal is defined as follows: "A society free of sex and other forms of discrimination in all spheres that creates and maintains a socioeconomic, cultural, political and legal environment, in both the public and private domains free of sex discrimination, where all males and females, at all stages of the life cycle can full human rights and develop their full potential as productive citizens."

The Plan lays out a situation analysis (health, education, family...) presenting threats, weaknesses and opportunities to address gender inequalities, as well as a matrix of goals, outcomes, strategies and actions.


Monitoring and tracking

National Indicators

Territory Orientation: % of paruishes with sustainable development plans not older than 5 years (Table 49: Proposed Indicators and Targets for National Outcome #15, p.260)

Urban Housing and Basic Services: Housing Quality Index 
% of population with secure housing tenure (owner, occupancy, rent, released)
(Table 49: Proposed Indicators and Targets for National Outcome #15, p.260)