THE government will not hesitate to cancel One Hundred Sands Limited's exclusive casino licence if the company cannot demonstrate that construction of the $290million investment will begin soon.
During a press briefing yesterday, acting Prime Minister and Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said they had written to One Hundred Sands Ltd asking for an explanation why the government should not cancel their casino licence as per the agreed-upon standards and specifications.
"With due consideration of the significant economic benefits the project would bring to Fiji, government has given One Hundred Sands ample time to get their finances in order," Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said.
"Today (yesterday), I have written to the chairman asking him to show clear cause why government should not cancel the licence.
"Their response will be assessed in the best interests of the Fijian people."
One Hundred Sands was granted an exclusive licence to construct and manage Fiji's first casino on Denarau Island in Nadi in December 2011. Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama officiated at the groundbreaking ceremony last April and construction of the $290million casino was expected to be completed by October this year.
Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said under the terms of the licence, One Hundred Sands would be required to pay the government $US100,000 ($F185,668) in penalty each month the project remained incomplete, beginning October 1 this year.
Asked on how much more time would government give the company, Mr Sayed-Khaiyum replied: "We have written to them to show us cause why we should not cancel the licence and now we are waiting for a response."
He said the government had granted One Hundred Sands Limited more time when they asked for it.
He added this was a transparent process that meant they would go through another tender process.
Questions sent to Barbara L'Ami of One Hundred Sands Limited remained unanswered when this edition went to press last night.