Transport minister Mike Henry says that a new licence plate system is to be rolled out, which should address the widespread car stealing incidents across the island involving duplicate and counterfeit plates.
At least 554,000 motor vehicles will be affected when the transport ministry revamps the licence plate system, Henry said.
Speaking at Wednesday’s Jamaica House post-cabinet press briefing Henry cautioned that the rampant abuse of the system had to be stopped.
Henry however did not give a specific date for implementation of the new system.
“The new licence plate system will be rolled out once it is approved by the finance ministry, he said.
According to the transport minister, government, recognising the current problems associated with the existing licence plate system is now seeking to address loopholes by crafting a regime, which will benefit the country as a whole.
“My job is to make transport safer, transport that is more in keeping with the needs of the country,” he declared.
Henry said that his ministry, in consultation with the relevant stakeholder departments of government, has identified deficiencies in the current licence plate system and as such a revamp is necessary.
Among the critical issues identified, he said, are incidents of vehicle theft, duplicate plates, counterfeit plates and trafficking of stolen vehicles.
According to Henry, the revision of the Road Traffic Act will include the relevant legislative amendment for effecting the required changes to the current license plate regime.
“In addition to addressing the changes that will be carried out to the actual licence plate, the examination of the provisions of the Act is also being extended to an assessment of the licence plate vehicle/relationship, a ministry document stated.
Earlier this year the traffic police reported that they uncovered a licence plate-manufacturing racket in Kingston.
According to the police duplicate plates, which were identical to the original, were being sold for approximately $5,000 per pair.