Bid to improve people’s lives

Recipients of micro and small business grant cheques get their cheques registered after recieving it from Minister for Trade Faiyaz Koya. Picture LUKE RAWALA I2

A total of 1527 recipients of micro and small business grant cheques amounting up to $1000 are expected to begin a new chapter in their lives as they grow new livelihoods from the assistance.

Minister for Industry and Trade Faiyaz Koya told recipients they had proved their ability and knowledge to undertake business and positively contribute to the Fijian economy.

Mr Koya reminded small business entrepreneurs who made up bulk of the recipients that they made up the micro small medium enterprise (MSME) sector which was the backbone of Fiji’s economy.

“The total number of businesses assisted in Labasa and nearby areas since the inception of the program totals 4685,” he said.

“It is the vision of the Fijian Government to ignite the entrepreneurial spirit in Fijians and this is embedded in the five-year and 20-year National Development Plan (NDP), which sets the overall vision of promoting entrepreneurial culture through sustainable MSMEs.

“The growth of MSMEs is essential for job creation, income generation, rural development, poverty alleviation and empowerment of youth and women.

“For this reason, policy interventions have focused on improving the institutional setting, access to finance, business incubation and training and connecting MSMEs to markets.”

He was speaking at the cheque disbursement which took place at Subrail Park, Labasa on Wednesday.