SUNBIZ

Local Enterprises Told To RISE To The Occassion To Progress Fiji

Through RISE, the Ministry for Industry, Trade, Tourism, Local Government, Housing and Community Development is allocating $500,000 for enterprises.
23 Jan 2020 14:47
Local Enterprises Told To RISE To The Occassion To Progress Fiji
From left: Acton Fiji Managing Director Shobha Reddy, Consultant Jenny Seeto, ANZ Country Head Fiji & Head of Commercial, Pacific and Research and Innovation Scheme for Enterprises chair, Saud Minam, Minister for Industry, Trade, Tourism, Local Government, Housing and Community Development Premila Kumar, Permanent Secretary for Industry, Trade and Tourism Shaheen Ali, Consumer Council of Fiji chief executive officer Seema Shandil, Fiji National University Pro Vice Chancellor Professor James Pounder, Total Fiji Limited chief execuitve officer Kazi Rahman, Fiji Broadcasting Corporation chief financial officer Vimlesh Saga during the launch of the RISE project at Suvavou House in Suva. Photo: Laiseana Nasiga

Through the Research and Innovation Scheme for Enterprises, or RISE, the Government is taking an important step to progress Fiji into a modern and knowledge-based economy.

This was highlighted by the Minister for Industry, Trade, Tourism, Local Government, Housing and Community Development Premila Kumar during the launch of the RISE project at Suvavou House in Suva.

Mrs Kumar said the RISE project is one of the components of the Ministry’s 5-Year and 20-Year National Development Plan that are crucial for continued growth.

“RISE is one of the components that will assist enterprises to bring about innovation in their respective sectors by encouraging research and development (R&D).

“As Fiji continues its positive economic growth, we cannot sit on our laurels and think that business-as-usual will keep us going.

“We need to continually think about new initiatives to remain competitive and ahead of the game in this global market.

“For this, we need new public and private sector investments to realise our shared vision of “Transforming Fiji.”

She adds that the RISE project aims to encourage enterprises to be innovative, to think outside the box and elevate their businesses.

“Innovation as a tool for sustainable development can only be fueled by R&D.

“A mind-set of continuous improvement must be instilled in each of us to keep Fiji moving forward and that’s why R&D is so important.

Private sector

“Several countries around the world have pledged to increase public and private sector investments in R&D in order to meet Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2030.

“With your support, and more importantly, willingness, Fiji can do the same.

Through RISE, the Ministry for Industry, Trade, Tourism, Local Government, Housing and Community Development is allocating $500,000 for enterprises.

This minister kumar said would assist enterprises undertake R&D in a new or improved product, process or services, which will not only be beneficial to their business, but also the Fijian people.

“Some of the research that you do will not make headlines, but they can lead to outcomes that can benefit Fijians, and enhance their daily lives.

“Given Fiji’s commitment to ensuring green and blue economies as well as regional leadership in the area of climate adaptation and mitigation, it is prudent to embed the principles articulated in

“Fiji’s Green Growth Framework and the National Development Plan into the project design and criteria of RISE.

“I want to emphasise to all the businesses out there, this is an initiative for you. So, take up this opportunity to create new or improved products, processes,” she said.

RISE Selection Panel

RISE chair and Country Head Fiji & Head of Commercial, Pacific, Saud Minam said: “The Selection Panel provides resources to guide applicants to further improve their ideas to take their research concepts to the next level.

“The Selection Panel members have vast skills and knowledge to assess a proposal financially, determine the commercial viability and social impact, to name a few.

“Currently, there are three projects that have been discussed and elevated to the next stage of mentoring.

“It is especially exciting, as the universities will work with the proponents of projects to take it to the next level.

“Enterprises are eligible for funding up to $100,000. Furthermore, small and medium enterprises with an annual turnover of less than $500,000 will also be eligible for a grant funding of up to $50,000.”

The expression of interest is open for enterprises whether small or large. You can find out more on the RISE website: rise.gov.fj

Feedback: laiseana.nasiga@fijisun.com.fj

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