NEWS

Fiji Could Host First Meeting in Region

The Marriott Hotel, which is still under construction, is being earmarked as the venue in 2019 or 2020. Fiji is being eyed as the first country in the Pacific to
27 Jul 2016 10:23
Fiji Could Host First Meeting in Region
Attorney General and Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum with Asian Development Bank The Secretary Woochong Um and Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama at Korovuto College in Nadi yesterday. Photo: WAISEA NASOKIA

The Marriott Hotel, which is still under construction, is being earmarked as the venue in 2019 or 2020.

Fiji is being eyed as the first country in the Pacific to host the annual world meeting of the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

The meeting attracts from between 2000 to 3000 ADB delegates which includes Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors from its 67 member countries from around the world.

The Marriott Hotel at Momi, which is still under construction, is being earmarked as the venue to host the meeting in 2019 or 2020.

This was confirmed yesterday by the Attorney-General and Minister for Economy, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, following a brief meeting with officials from ADB in Manila.

The officials arrived at the sugar consultation at Korovuto College outside of Nadi and they also got to meet Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama.

ADB Regional Director Pacific Robert Jauncey said this year’s meeting would be held in Frankfurt in Germany and next year’s would be held in Japan.

“We are exploring options for Fiji to host in 2019 or 2020,” Mr Jauncey said.

“We are very positive and the Government is very keen and we have had very good discussions.”

“However this is for our shareholders to decide next year on where to hold the meeting but so far the meetings with Government have been very positive.”

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said the Marriott Hotel Convention Centre would open up Fiji’s chances of attracting large meetings through the Meetings Incentives Exhibition Market (MICE).

“A few years ago we were given the opportunity to host the Filmfare Award from the Bollywood Industry but what was needed was a 3000 indoor sitting space which we don’t have,” he said.

“But you must have the room inventory and it is only in the Western Division that you have this so we need to take advantage of that and expand the tourism and travel sector.”

He said they had approached Fiji National Provident Fund- which is developing Momi – to build a large convention centre.

“We have said previously that Fiji would like to host one of the world meetings the Asian Development Bank. It has never been held in the Pacific so the ADB team is here from Manila to assess our capability and capacity to host their annual meeting which is very large,” Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said.

He said the ADB team had also done some scoping on Denarau Island.

“We prefer to have it in Momi where the Fiji National Provident Fund which is building the resort is designing a very large convention centre,” he said.

“We believe Momi is a good destination which will be new and we could also transfer people in by bus from Denarau and various other hotels.

“We also have the InterContinental Resort and Spa and the Shangri La Fijian Resort nearby to cater for those coming in. It is the same when you have meetings in one of these large cities overseas, it takes you sometimes about 45 minutes to get from where you are staying to the convention centre.”

Edited by Nemani Delaibatiki

 Feedback:charles.chambers@fijisun.com.fj

 

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