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Fiji Time: 11:00 PM on Thursday 24 April

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$1m lift for dairy

Repeka Nasiko
Friday, November 23, 2012

DAIRY farming in the west and in the country has been given a major boost with a $1 million budget allocation for 2013.

The industry also received more positive investments with tariff incentives being placed to assist Fiji Dairy Limited.

In his national budget address, Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama said a 20-year tax holiday would be available for those who set up new dairy farms in the Korovou to Tavua region.

"Tariff incentives will also be put in place to help Fiji Dairy Limited grow its share of the market while encouraging more local milk production," he said.

"We consume nearly 77 million litres of milk each year but produce only 10 million litres. With the increased farm gate milk prices paid to farmers, new incentives and new investment by Fiji Dairy Limited, including chilling plants, we expect this to change."

Earlier this year, the government revealed plans to encourage sugarcane farmers to take up dairy farming.

A total of 16,000 registered sugarcane farmers in the west will benefit from the new tax incentives and the $1 million allocation for the dairy industry.

High demand for dairy products and the high import costs has led to an increase in interest in the industry.