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Vote Of Confidence: PM

Vote Of Confidence: PM
September 11
12:01 2014

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama said the launch of the multi storey Grand Fijian building project in Suva last night “is a vote of confidence in Fiji by Fijians.”

Speaking at the Grand Pacific Hotel, he said: It was a testament to the general confidence that his government had instilled in the business community with their reform programme over the past eight years.

The building at the corner of Forster and Pratt Street, will be erected by the Sharma Design Group, through their subsidiary Frontier Investments. It will be the tallest in Fiji and 30 storeys high.

“The Sharma Group tells me that 350 new jobs will be created in the construction phase and at least 150 when the building is completed. So this is not only a project to capture the imagination but create employment and boost the wider economy,” Mr Bainimarama said.

“Our economy grew by 4.6 per cent in 2013 and we are expecting a similar performance this year. It is only the third most sustained period of economic growth in Fiji’s history and a remarkable achievement under the circumstances. It eclipses that of our bigger neighbours, New Zealand and Australia and has only been made possible by the growth-friendly and investor-friendly policy settings of my government.

“It is vitally important that these policy settings continue. FijiFirst is the only political party contesting this election that has anything like a credible economic policy. The rest pluck figures from the air, make wild guesses or in the case of one party, promises to slash VAT by 5 per cent without ever detailing how the revenue shortfall of $300-million would be made up.

“Indeed, it is alarming how little focus has been given to the economy in this campaign. As someone once said when asked what would decide an American election: ‘It’s the economy, stupid’.  It is the most important issue in Fiji as well, yet no-one wants to talk about it because they have no idea where to take us. To grow the economy, attract investment and generate the jobs that Fijians need to improve their standard of living.

“We gather tonight in one of the jewels of Suva – a historic building dating back to 1914 but one that was allowed to tarnish.

“It stood here during that period as a sad reminder that our capital and our country had stagnated. That instead of moving forward confidently, Fiji was locked in a cycle of competing interests, of division, that had robbed us of the ability to think big.

“Well, I’m here to tell you that those days are over. And there’s no better symbol of that than the GPH. Now restored to its former glory and more. The pride of our capital and the pride of our nation.”

Feedback:  maikab@fijisun.com.fj

 

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