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Koya: Fiji’s Grants Scheme One Of Best In The World

Koya: Fiji’s Grants Scheme One Of Best In The World
A happy recipient receives her grant from Minister for Industry, Trade, Tourism and Mineral Resources Faiyaz Koya at the Girmit Centre in Lautoka on April 27, 2018. Photo: Ministry of Industry and Trade
April 28
13:23 2018

He made the comment during the disbursement of micro and small business grants to 539 first time recipients and those wanting to expand their present businesses at the Girmit Centre in Lautoka.

The Micro and Small Busi­ness Grants scheme under­taken by Government has recorded an 80.3 per cent success rate since its inception in 2015.

Minister for Industry, Trade, Tourism, Land and Mineral Re­sources Faiyaz Koya said that the success rate would be one of the highest in the world with coun­tries that have such schemes.

Mr Koya made the comment dur­ing the disbursement of micro and small business grants to 539 first time recipients and those wanting to expand their present businesses at the Girmit Centre in Lautoka yesterday.

The minister in addition also handed further grants to 69 re­cipients for cyclone rehabilitation purposes, with the aim to build up their businesses that were either partly or fully damaged by the cy­clone.

“The people of Lautoka and the Western Division have displayed resilience in recovering from the recent cyclones and these grant assistance is intended to provide another leg up for your business endeavors,” he said.

Since its inception in 2015, Gov­ernment has distributed a total of $17.3million to 17,970 recipients around the country.

“The MSBG scheme also serves as a platform for registering in­formal micro and small operators into the formal sector,” Mr Koya said.

“This will assist Government pol­icy makers in formulating policies that will ensure growth in our Mi­cro Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector.”

Mr Koya said the MSME sector was a critical sector in every coun­try’s economy because it contrib­uted towards job creation, back­ward linkages to larger industries and generates economic activities in communities and the nation as a whole.

He added Government was work­ing overtime in growing the MSME sector’s 10-12 per cent contribution towards our Gross Domestic Prod­uct.

“The provision of pro-growth initiatives such as the MSBG, will further boost the MSME sectors contribution as it provides capital injections for the growth of our micro and small businesses,” the minister said.

The Central Co-ordinating Agen­cy (CCA), currently based within the ministry will be responsible for the co-ordination of all MSME related initiatives within the coun­try and once fully operational, would be responsible for coordi­nating all business advisory and support services to MSMEs.

The Young Entrepreneurship Scheme (YES) programme is an­other initiative.

It is targeting youth entrepre­neurs between the ages of 18 to 30 years who have innovative, unique and bankable business ideas which could be easily transformed into marketable products and services,

They are encouraged to apply for this grant funding.

While the ministry will provide the needed training and business development support services, the Fiji Development Bank will work closely within the ministry in monitoring the respective busi­nesses through site inspections af­ter six months from now.

Mr Koya advised the recipients to ensure that the grants were uti­lised for their intended purposes and proper book keeping on sales, expenses and profits were properly recorded.

Recipients who have successfully grown their businesses may apply for small business loans with the FDB.

Edited by Percy Kean

charles.chambers@fijisun.com.fj

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