FOR the successful implementation of any foreign aid or assistance, the government and the nation must be consulted, says Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama.
Speaking in Lautoka yesterday, Commodore Bainimarama stressed the importance of government involvement when foreign aid was given to assist in national development.
"I am sure you will agree that for any foreign aid or assistance to be successfully implemented, the government and the nation must be consulted and have input," he said.
"It is not merely a question of being courteous and respectful, but is surely the best way to achieve real and sustainable outcomes.
"In other words, to direct the aid and assistance to the right people and in an overall sense, complement a nation's development goals and wellbeing."
He said aid must only be temporary but its effects must be lasting.
"Working with our external partners, it is for Fijians to determine our national priorities, Fijians to implement them and Fijian institutions to work with ordinary people to achieve positive and lasting change."
Commodore Bainimarama commended the EU for its involvement in funding the construction of a state of the art research facility for the Sugar Research Institute of Fiji.
The EU gave $760,000 or 58 per cent of the $1.3million used to construct the complex located in Drasa, Lautoka.
"The Sugar Research Institute of Fiji has a new complex and I would like to thank everyone who has been involved in bringing this project to fruition.
"Let us all — government, our development partners, the Fiji Sugar Corporation, farmers, and NGOs — renew our collective commitment to work together for the benefit of the 200,000 Fijians who depend on the sugarcane industry for their livelihood."