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Growing Fiji By Expanding Market

Growing Fiji By Expanding Market
Chief executive of Aswhy Enterprises Rasalato Yanuyanurua
July 01
12:12 2018

local company which exports mahogany products to overseas markets like France and Italy is now planning to export to United Arab Emirates.

During a seminar organised by the Fiji Export Council and the Pacific Trade & Invest to prepare companies to be part of the March 2019 Trade Mission, chief executive of Aswhy Enterprises, Rasalato Yanuyanurua said they are planning to downstream their products and value add.

This, so that their products are more marketable.

“We are planning for energy efficient wood, instead of cutting down a tree or wood, we can stick saw dust and glue them together, heat it up properly and compress it, so it can become glue laminated timer and export to UAE.

Aswhy enterprises, established 4 years ago, started exporting Crotch logs to France and Italy. The company also exports slabs at $2100 per cubic metre and logs at $1700 per cubic metre.

Their secondary product is Mahogany guitar necks which are exported to the United States and sold at $16 per board foot.

Mr Yanuyanurua said they are also looking to start exporting to New Zealand again.

Last year he went for the trade show where he had secured a deal from New Zealand to supply sawn timber.

“NZ we are supplying mahogany timber, flooring and decking.

“NZ is more concerned with the sustainability of the wood in Fiji, so we inquired with the Ministry of Forest and the Fiji hardwood Corporation on what are their plans for a sustainable forest. NZ is more concerned that the supply is consistent,” Mr Yanuyanurua said.

“What are we doing, if we are cutting the forest, are we replanting?”

There are also chances of making guitar in Fiji and not only to export but sell it locally.

Mr Yanuyanurua said instead of buying an imported guitar in Fiji for $100 the same guitar can be brought to $30-$40.

“What we are doing here is promoting Fijian made.”

Aswhy Enterprises in future is looking into making veneer from the crotch logs and export rather than only sending crotch logs.

“The product for veneer is sent to France and they make it there and send to China and China sends it back to Fiji, so it’s a cycle. If we make veneer here than it will be cheap in Fiji”

He said Crotch logs are made from wood by-product and with the licence from the Fiji Hardwood Corporation, it entitles them to buy the by-products from them.

“Buying the by-products in a sense reducing the effects of climate change, the cost is less and profit is more and the sawn dust emits carbon so there is a lot of sawn dust lying around and we get them and we could make energy efficient wood.

“We are striving to go into the markets and look for things that would make us unique to value to our product and we are committed to product development,” Mr Yanuyanurua said.

Aswhy Enterprises is the only company from Fiji known in the international market that specialises in veneer.

Feedback:  mohammed.zulfikar@fijisun.com.fj

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