JAMAiCA'S RELATiONS WiTH
INTERNATiONAL CApiTAL ANd THE
US iN THE 1980S
The external relations which the JLP government pursued in the 1980s were to a large extent of an economic nature. With regard to the US in particular, Jamaica vigorously tried to insert itself into the global economic concept of the new Reagan administration in Washington. In a wider sense, Seaga presented his government as an adherent of the free global movement of the factors of production, especially capital.
The Seaga government was preoccupied with courting US finance and commercial capital, which is only understandable given the fact that North America is both Jamaica's largest market and foreign investment source as well as bilateral donor of official aid. In many of its investment promotion initiatives it sought to incorporate the particular interests of the wider Caribbean, the US capital itself, and developments within the global economy.
With regard to the latter, Seaga, who as minister of finance and prime minister controlled most of Jamaica's external economic relations, displayed a keen interest in the global economic trends which affected the US economy. In all his attempts to attract US investment to Jamaica, he emphasized his understanding of the legitimate concerns of the American industry, workers and taxpayers, as well as the concerns of the US legislators. At the same time he promoted his proposals by suggesting their supposed mutual beneficence