THE hydro project on Taveuni will economically empower women, said Volau Yavalanavanua, president of the Taveuni Women Empowerment group.
The comment by Ms Yavalanavanua follows the signing of a contractual agreement for the hydro project between the Chinese Government and senior officials from the Prime Minister's Office last week.
"We are looking forward to the day the hydro project will be completed because having a 24-hour supply of electricity in our homes will assist many women to sell things from home," she said.
"It will help us earn money and support our husbands and families. Women can sew at home and even have canteens because the electricity supply is continuous."
The Prime Minister's permanent secretary, Colonel Pio Tikoduadua, said the agreement would allow the Chinese Government to fund the Somosomo mini hydro power station, which would produce 700kW of power and generate electricity through two 350kW generators.
"Today's signing is another demonstration of the close friendship and mutual co-operation that exists between China and Fiji," Col. Tikoduadua said.
"I would like to thank the government of the People's Republic of China for funding this project, which is very critical to the development of the Fijian people."
Hunan Construction Engineering Group general manager Yu Guohui said the company was pleased to be part of the mutual co-operation between the Chinese and Fijian Governments.
"We are grateful that we have been awarded the contract to construct the Somosomo mini hydro power station by the Chinese Government," he said.
"We are determined to complete the project within the timeframe of 16 months and are pleased to be able to contribute to a project that will benefit the people of Taveuni."