State set to divest part of FEA shares

GOVERNMENT is in the process of divesting part of its shares in Fiji Electricity Authority (FEA) to get private sector participation.

Acting Prime Minister and Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said Government had appointed investment advisers to carry out the process.

“We can have a mixture of public private partnerships where you can have government entity ownership together with the private sector having some shares in it.

“It’s about getting ordinary Fijians to own shares and that’s the mechanism that we are going through at the moment. We’ve already appointed investment advisers for this process.”

The proposed restructuring and partial sell-off of the FEA was first announced in the 2014 National Budget as part of plans for a one-off boost to the public coffers from the sell-down of stakes in some state assets.

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama reaffirmed its intention to proceed with the sales in the 2015 budget (passed by Parliament in December 2014).

According to the 2015 budget, Government hopes to raise a total of $507m from asset sales.

While the government shares was unspecified, it’s understood the shareholder value of FEA is worth $601 million as of 2014.

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