Preparations underway for council symposium

By MARAIA VULA Preparations have begun for the two-day Fiji Indigenous Business Council symposium next month. The previously annual event is being revived after two year. The symposium will be
28 Feb 2014 11:09


Preparations have begun for the two-day Fiji Indigenous Business Council symposium next month. The previously annual event is being revived after two year.
The symposium will be held on March 19 and 20 at the Holiday Inn Suva
And who better to partner with in this milestone event than Fijian Holdings – a highly successful enterprise intended for iTaukei to invest in businesses.
Council president, Ulai Taoi, said: “The council looks forward to undertake meaningful dialogue regarding the involvement of indigenous peoples in the area of business development and mentoring.
“We see our role as being critical to promoting investments not only in Fiji but to consider expanding our engagement to the other indigenous communities in the region.”
Given Fijian Holdings’ status as the largest and most successful indigenous business, group chief executive, Nouzab Fareed, said they are quite excited about their involvement.
He said this was in particular offering advice to the forum and strategically offering new ways of partnering with indigenous businesses.
“Moreover, listening to the challenges that are often faced by indigenous businesses in such a complex and competitive business environment,” Mr Fareed said.
“I think there’s no one better than us that can be part of this symposium and this is not the first time we are sponsoring as we had sponsored in the past.”

The symposium
Mr Taoi said the symposium will highlight the importance of developing indigenous youth entrepreneurship, sharing business development techniques and stories of success.
President Papua New Guinea Indigenous Business Council, Sir Nagora Bogan, will be speaking on the making of Pacific Indigenous entrepreneurs, an exciting topic for new and established entrepreneurs.
Melanesian Spearhead Group Secretariat Director General, Peter Forau will be speaking on the role of the business sector in strengthening the MSG objectives.
Indigenous Solomon Business Council Vice Chair, Nanette Tutua, will share her experience on government role in accelerating indigenous participation.
Registrations begin today at the Freight Services (Fiji) Limited at 24 Edinburgh Drive in Suva.
Council members pay a fee of $130 while members of the public intending to attend pay a fee of $250 which is inclusive of meals.

Council members
Established in 2002, the Fiji Indigenous Business Council is a peak body for all iTaukei businesses.
It is mandated to represent members of the iTaukei community engaged in business or commerce in Fiji.
Mr Taoi said: “When we had our last count in 2005, we had about 165 members. In 2011, there was a drop of about 35 members.
“But we did have a lot of challenges in the past couple of years because most of us own small to medium businesses.
“Some of the challenges of course is doing business, the cash flow, loan and getting money to finance our companies.”
Mr Taoi stressed that Fiji has always been a leader in developing networks that are vibrant and conducive to the economic and export development of the Pacific.

From left: Fiji Indigenous Business Council secretary, Joe Taoi, council chairman, Ulai Taoi, and Fijian Holdings Limited Group chief executive Nouzab Fareed following a press conference yesterday to announce the details of the Fiji Indigenous Business Council’s revived annual symposium to be held next month. Photo: JUSTINE MANNAN

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