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Progress . . . Not At The Cost Of Losing Identity: Bala

  Minister for Local Government, Housing and Environment Praveen Bala said Fiji was desirous of progress but not at the cost of losing her identity. “We want to progress, we
06 Oct 2016 11:00
Progress . . . Not At The Cost Of Losing Identity: Bala
Minister for Local Government, Housing, Environment, Infrastructure and Transport Parveen Kumar Bala and GEF SEC Mr Peter Lallas(garland) and Local Government, Housing, Environment, Infrastructure and Transport Permanent Secretary Joshua Wycliffe with participant at the Global Environment Facility Meeting at Sheraton Fiji Resort, Denarau yesterday. Photo:Litia Tikomailepanoni

 

Minister for Local Government, Housing and Environment Praveen Bala said Fiji was desirous of progress but not at the cost of losing her identity.

“We want to progress, we want to build national capacities, we want good infrastructure, we want modernisation, we want resilient towns and cities but not at the cost of losing our identity,” Mr Bala said.

Mr Bala was speaking yesterday at the opening of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) funded Pacific Regional Expanded Constituency Workshop and meeting attended by 130 delegates from 17 countries at the Sheraton Fiji Resort on Denarau Island.

“Fiji like many other Pacific Island countries is having a challenge in the face of economic modernisation of our societies with alarming rates of biodiversity loss, degradation of our arable land and rising sea level,” he said.

He said the ministry was working hard to find solutions to increasing problems pertaining to environment each day.

“Our regions are ready to adapt to renewable energy sources, build strong food security from our traditional food preservation and farming techniques, maintain subsistence farming, depend on energy efficient products and above all live a simple life but high thinking lifestyle,” he said.

He said he did not object to industrialisation but considered the ethics attached to it.

Mr Bala thanked the GEF for their investments made in the Pacific region.

“Since 1991 when GEF was established it has provided a total of US$14.60 million (FJ$ 30.03m) to Fiji for projects relating to biodiversity conservation, land degradation, climate change and persistent organic pollutants,” Mr Bala said.

The workshop will see participants discuss environmental issues, challenges, aids and future climate change and international projects and funding through GEF.

The workshop will end on tomorrow (Friday).

Edited by Rusiate Mataika

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