PRIME Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama rewarded 35 companies through the Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority Gold Card Premium program at Nasese in Suva yesterday.
Speaking at the launch of the program and the program's revamped website, Commodore Bainimarama said the Gold Card premium was part of the government's bigger plan.
The first group of 35 Gold Card holders was mainly the large multinationals and big local companies.
"Gold Card Premium Services are part of our bigger plan to recognise and reward people who have paid taxes and duties honestly and on time," he said at the launch.
The Gold Card Premium Services Program is in recognition of entities and individuals who have a consistent history of excellent compliance in both customs and taxation.
FRCA chief executive officer Jitoko Tikolevu said the gold cards that were distributed were not just gold cards but were meaningful in terms of the services they had provided.
The initiative was a partnership between FRCA and certain government agencies, which included the Immigration Department, Airports Fiji Limited, Biosecurity Authority of Fiji, Land Transport Authority and Fiji Airways
Some of the benefits of being a gold card member include priority services and personal baggage duty free allowance of up to $2000 at international arrivals counters, priority services for passports and permits at the Immigration Department and baggage collection and escort services by Airports Fiji Limited.
Mr Tikolevu added that other benefits also included express lane and priority services for all inspection and clearance services at Biosecurity Authority of Fiji; express lane for all LTA services and priority check in at the Tabua Club Counter whenever the member was flying on the national airline, Fiji Airways.
"We are committed to that in terms of the services we have provided were really delivered," Mr Tikolevu said.
He said it was critical that if they wanted to continue to enjoy, they should maintain the level of compliance.
The Gold Card premium has been handled by dedicated FRCA appointed staff for the last six weeks.
Apart from the 35 companies that have been awarded with the gold cards an additional 36 companies will be identified by FRCA by the end of this year.