Investor interest up

Minister for Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport Faiyaz Koya during a High-Level Regional Roundtable on WTO Investment Facilitation for Development Negotiations. Picture: FILE

FIJI is still gaining interest and confidence, by foreign investors who want to explore the country as an investment destination of choice.

This was revealed by the Minister for Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport Faiyaz Koya during a High-Level Regional Roundtable on WTO Investment Facilitation for Development Negotiations on Tuesday.

“These are extraordinary times – not just in Fiji, but world over.

“Whilst international institutions, such as IMF are predicting a 5.5 per cent expansion of the global economy, small and tourism-based economies, will continue to feel the pressure.

“According to the Reserve Bank of Fiji, the Fijian economy contracted by 19 per cent and the recovery of the domestic economy in 2021, is largely dependent on the opening of borders, international travel and pick-up in tourism activities.”

He said in this situation, FDI, re-investments and domestic investments were key in keeping the country afloat as in 2019, investment contribution to the Fijian economy was 15.8 per cent.

“To really capitalise on our COVID contained status, we have been devising smarter, more targeted, incentives to encourage investments and maintain investor confidence.

“These incentives are inclusive of special economic zones, tax holidays and reduced tariffs.

“Specifically, we have implemented sector specific incentives, to encourage investments in areas such as, green technology, waste management, health, agriculture, energy and ICT.

“More importantly, under our investment related legislative reforms, there will be a revised reserved and restricted list, so we have a more open list, with more fields now open for exploration by foreign investors.”

The ministry was said to be at the helm of all the on-going changes and according to Mr Koya Fiji was one of the pioneering Pacific nations, engaged in such rigorous reforms.

“We started the journey with a vision to ‘Transform Fiji’, and now it is about rebuilding Fiji and getting Fijians back to work – with new quality of energy and responsibility, whilst maintaining our hub of the Pacific status,” he said.

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