Update: 3:24PM MINISTER for Industry, Trade and Tourism Faiyaz Koya believes the Melanesian Free Trade Agreement will usher a deeper and stronger trade and economic relations amongst the MSG countries.
While delivering his ministerial statement in Parliament
yesterday, Mr Koya said the new agreement was not only beneficial through trade
in goods but also incorporated trade in services, investments and labour
Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama in January signed the MSG
Trade Agreement, making Fiji the second MSG country after Solomon Islands to
endorse the revised and renewed trade agreement between the four MSG countries.
"The MSG Trade Agreement is one of the most successful,
operative regional trade agreements and since 2011, under Fiji's leadership,
the MSG has transformed itself into a vehicle of progress for the economic
well-being of its people," Mr Koya said.
The MSG in 1993 signed its first trade agreement, known then
as the MSG Trade Agreement "One" (MSGTA1), with the original three
Members Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.
This established a reciprocal trade agreement in a limited
number of products.
Fiji later joined the MSG Trade Agreement in 1998 to
solidify its status in the group which led to contribution of MSGTA1 in terms
of coverage of goods.
A second agreement, the MSG Trade Agreement "Two"
(MSGTA2)' was signed by the four parties in 2005, in PNG.