THE country lost $73.4million in potential earnings during the period it recovered from the destruction of Tropical Cyclone Evan.
Speaking at the opening of the post disaster needs management (PDNA) workshop in Labasa earlier this week, PS National Disaster Management Filipe Alifereti labelled the disaster as one of the worst to hit Fiji.
Mr Alivereti said it caused damage estimated at $194.9m, equivalent to 2.6 per cent of Fiji's GDP.
"Most of these damage and losses occurred in the Northern Division, which bore the brunt of the flashfloods and cyclones that have hit Fiji in recent years, but the Northern Division has had its fair share as well," he said
"Given our vulnerability to natural disasters, this PDNA training program for disaster management is critical to officials in the Northern Division.
"In April this year, the Fijian Government approved the PDNA Report for Tropical Cyclone Evan and in doing so, approved the use of the PDNA for carrying out damage assessments under our disaster management framework."
Mr Alivereti said the decision aimed to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of response to natural disasters.
"It requires us to make the transition from the conventional initial damage assessments (IDAs) and detailed damage assessments (DDAs), which we are all familiar with to this new PDNA methodology.
"Government relies on officials in times of disaster to provide timely, accurate and reliable assessments for informed decision-making to ensure the people of the Northern Division were able to receive assistance and quickly recover from the traumatic effects of such disasters.
"Natural disasters are a way of life for us now and government has adopted the PDNA approach because it is a more effective tool in making determinations about the provision of much needed assistance to our people.
"The PDNA also requires us to extend our focus beyond the emergency response and short-term rehabilitation and adopt a longer term strategic approach."
He said officials would be closely involved in disaster management efforts in the Northern Division.
"We are now expected to provide vital data beyond the physical damage to property, infrastructure and productive assets to account for losses resulting from the disruption of economic flows brought by the disaster currently not covered under conventional disaster assessments."