SUNBIZ

Fiji Sugar Debt To Be Converted To Equity

The Fijian Government owns 68.11 per cent shares, while the Fiji National Provident Fund (FNPF) and Fijian Holdings Limited (FHL) own 17.59 per cent and 8.86 per cent shares, respectively.
28 Oct 2021 12:30
Fiji Sugar Debt To Be Converted To Equity
Fiji Sugar Corporation’s Lautoka Mill on October 27, 2021. Photo: Salote Qalubau.

Fiji Sugar Corporation’s debt of $173.8 million will be converted to equity, acting permanent secretary for Economy, Shiri Gounder said.

It is a move to strengthen the balance sheet of the Fiji Sugar Corporation, as was announced during the COVID-19 Response Budget.

The Fijian Government owns 68.11 per cent shares, while the Fiji National Provident Fund (FNPF) and Fijian Holdings Limited (FHL) own 17.59 per cent and 8.86 per cent shares, respectively.

Other minority shareholders own 5.44 per cent shares.

 

“In order to proceed with the debt to equity conversion, the Government ensured it obtained 100 per cent shareholding in Fiji Sugar Corporation,” Mr Gounder said.

“Undertaking a debt to equity conversion without first obtaining a full 100 per cent shareholding, would have further diluted the minority shareholders.

“Minority shareholders have protection under the Companies Act.”

Mr Gounder said the Fijian Government first started with the acquisition of shares held by Fiji National Provident Fund and Fijian Holdings Limited.

“Following the acquisition of these shares at $0.005 per share, the Fijian Government now has a 94.56 per cent shareholding in Fiji Sugar Corporation,” he said.

 

Majority Shares
With more than 90 per cent shareholding, Government has offered the same price of $0.005 to compulsorily acquire the remaining minority shares, Mr Gounder said.

“This is in line with the provisions in the Companies Act.

“The offer price was based on valuation of the company and the inherent risk and burden borne by the Fijian Government as the majority shareholder.”

Mr Gounder said the Fijian Government was the only shareholder providing financial support to Fiji Sugar Corporation through grants, loans and guarantees.

Lautoka crushing end set

 

Meanwhile, the Sugar Industry Tribunal Devanesh Sharma has ordered the Corporation to terminate crushing at Lautoka Mill on November 3, 2021.

A statement from the Fiji Sugar Corporation said the order followed consultations with the Chief Executive Officer of the Sugar Cane Growers Council and the Chief Executive Officer of the Fiji Sugar Corporation.

FSC said the Sugar Industry Tribunal requested all growers and gangs in Lautoka Mill to make every effort to harvest all cane and deliver it to Lautoka Mill by Wednesday November 3, 2021.

 

Feedback: frederica.elbourne@fijisun.com.fj



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