The Press Association of Jamaica, PAJ is greeting word that Jamaica has improved in its ranking on the annual World Press Freedom Index.

The latest index results were published this week by the global watchdog group, Reporters Without Borders.

The index shows that Jamaica has moved up two places from eighth last year to sixth this year out of 180 countries.

According to Reporters Without Borders, Jamaica ranks among the countries that most respect freedom of the press.

Reporters Without Borders described the law decriminalizing defamation passed by the House of Representatives in 2013 as a step in the right direction.

In a statement yesterday, PAJ President, Dionne Jackson Miller, said the association is happy about Jamaica’s improved ranking.

But, Mrs. Jackson Miller says the PAJ must continue to be vigilant as the erosion of press freedom can be insidious.

Mrs. Jackson Miller says the PAJ continues to be concerned about the potential impact of the Data Protection Act on journalism in Jamaica.

The Act is now being examined by a Joint Select Committee of Parliament.

Mrs. Jackson Miller noted that the PAJ has been calling for the practice of journalism to be completely exempted from the provisions of the Act.