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$350m forecast

Ropate Valemei
Thursday, January 10, 2013

INVESTMENT Fiji has set a target of more than $350million in implemented foreign direct investments (FDIs) projects for the year says chief executive officer Ravuni Uluilakeba.

Lamenting the progress of investments in Fiji over the past five years, Mr Uluilakeba said the positive results showed government's commitment to create more investment opportunities in Fiji.

"Investments in Fiji over the past five years when one gauges the yearly average has been positive compared to 5-10 years before 2006," he said.

"As for total investments last year, the approximate number of implemented FDIs projects should be over $300m.

"Our target for 2013 in terms of implemented FDIs is well over the $350m mark."

"The future plan for Investment Fiji is to work very closely with all government agencies to ensure that foreign investors can easily get their investment approval on time and at the same time drive to have investment processes put on line for easy access by all investors in Fiji and abroad." He said new investment incentives approved by government in its 2013 Budget would be the catalyst to drive investments in 2013 and beyond.

Mr Uluilakeba said Investment Fiji's plans to create stronger awareness on new investment incentives and opportunities in Fiji would be strong this year with a few overseas trade and exposition missions in collaboration with other government agencies and the private sector.

Meanwhile, Asian Development Bank Pacific department principal economist Emma Veve told ABC Radio Australia recently investments in the country would 'pick up' gradually as Fiji heads towards the 2014 election.

She noted an increase in the levels of investment permits issued and private sector investment in the economy.

"But certainly not to the degree that government would hope — it has a target of 25 per cent of Gross Domestic Product being the level of investment and that's not being met," she told ABC Radio Australia.

She said most investment activities in Fiji were driven by government spending rather than private sector spending.