RAKIRAKI Town has been in existence for two years two months, having being declared on July 1st, 2012. In this time, the only source of revenue that the town has managed to collect is fees from business licenses, commercial vehicle stands and the market. There are no town rates levied to date, so capital works and wider scope of services are not offered yet. However, the council has been open to any opportunity for investors and interested stakeholders to bring in activities that have contributed to the economic development of the municipality.
In its toddler stage, it has been able to pilot a number of projects for Fiji through partnerships with various UN agencies and interested donors. These partnerships have been very successful and have put Fiji on the map of these various donors because of the percentages achieved in the project objectives. Some of the pilots are: -
* UN Women Partners Improving Markets Project
* UNDP Millennium Markets Project
* UNDP Cash for Work as part of the Early Recovery from Disaster Project
* Bhima Investments Limited - flood gate construction.
The cash for work project released $20,000 per week into the town's economy. The sugar mill has started operations for the 2012 season and money has started to flow consistently in the new town.
In the last two weeks, the Indian High Commission brought a Bollywood Matrix Dance Group to perform for the town's people and it was a feast of top quality international entertainment, the likes of which Rakiraki has never seen.
Also the Fiji Sports Council organized a Ra Rugby Fiesta which featured the victorious Nadroga Rugby Team at the Ra Sports Ground.
The three upcoming events that the Council will be part of are: -
* Library Week - 10 September 2012 - the Council events committee is assisting the Ra Library Assistant.
* Women Market Vendors Overnight Accommodation - opening for business in the next two weeks. This will cater for women from the interior who want to stay overnight in town so that they get the full benefit of their market produce.
* Market Upgrade for the casual market vendors who are currently selling outside and at the mercy of the elements every weekend. The structure will be open to maintain the outdoor feel of markets.
As recommended by Investment Fiji, the Council will shortly be launching a website to assist investors in considering Rakiraki as an investment hub, where clean air and water is still a part of the country daily lifestyle.
The market is provided free of charge to the Consumer Council of Fiji so that the public have easy access to the services and advice as consumers. There is also a proposed learning centre that is being established by UNDP for the continued capacity development and awareness sessions for the women market vendors.