THE Chinese government gave $14 million to the government through the Agriculture Department for mushroom cultivation at Legalega in Nadi.
This was revealed by Agriculture permanent secretary Ropate Ligairi yesterday.
He said the investment would also provide employment for locals and more importantly reduce the imports of mushrooms.
"This is one of the big projects targeted for the west and we are thankful to the Chinese government for their continued assistance," said Mr Ligairi.
"The first phase of development will start soon with the construction of buildings to be used as training centre, laboratory and office. "These kinds of investment will be the first for Fiji and we are confident it will bring more developments to the people in the west."
Mr Ligairi said the construction phase would take three years to complete with the aim of reducing government spending once completed.
"Another reason for setting up the new industry is to meet local demand and the growing tourism market especially at hotels."
"People, especially farmers, will benefit from this project in terms of having another form of income source
"The more opportunities we give out the better it will be for farmers as this can also help in the alleviation of poverty," he said.
Mr Ligairi said the new mushroom project would attract more local and overseas investors to fully utilise unused land in the west.
He said the government was committed in assisting the people of Fiji through various forms of agricultural investment and at the same time help the economy grow.