Sunvoice

It Has Been A Significant Week For Fiji

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama returns home today after a successful first official visit to New Zealand. It was also a significant week for trade relations between Fiji and New Zealand
24 Oct 2016 11:00
It Has Been A Significant  Week For Fiji

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama returns home today after a successful first official visit to New Zealand.

It was also a significant week for trade relations between Fiji and New Zealand the past week.

Mr Bainimarama was accorded full state honours by New Zealand and also had an official meeting with NZ Prime Minister John Key.

He was also the keynote speaker at the Fiji Trade and Investment Symposium in Auckland.

This was hosted by Fijian High Commissioner to NZ, Filimone Waqabaca, in partnership with the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism and the Office of the Consular General and Trade Commissioner.

The focus of the symposium was encouraging New Zealand investors to consider Fiji as a viable investment destination in the ICT, tourism, light manufacturing and agriculture sectors.

Opportunities were also highlighted that New Zealand businesses could source Fijian-made products for NZ consumers.

There was also a Fresh Produce Trade Forum on Wednesday as part of discussions around Fiji and our economy, looking at increasing Fiji’s fresh produce exports to NZ.

Mr Waqabaca further challenged the Fijians agriculture industry to double its output and chase down the tourism industry’s share of Fiji’s Gross Domestic Product.

He said although Fijian root crops make up 60 per cent of New Zealand’s root crop imports, Fiji only has a 1.4 per cent share in the fruit imports, and a growing 6.5 per cent share in ginger.

Mr Waqabaca said agriculture can double its share of GDP and the New Zealand market is there for the taking.

At the same time, the visit saw a strengthening overall relationship between the two neighbouring countries.

Mr Bainimarama has acknowledged that Mr Key has agreed to work with him to take the relationship between the two countries to a new level.

He told journalists afterwards: “A relationship in which we let bygones be bygones and work closely to advance the interests of the Fijian and New Zealand people.”

Mr Key agreed it was time to move forward.

At the end, the improved relations between the two countries will help the people of Fiji in many ways, be it tourism, exports, business/investment or be it for work purposes.

Fiji has now removed all restrictions on foreign journalists entering Fiji and NZ media also reported Mr Bainimarama emerging in a jovial mood.

But while the whole visit by the Prime Minister has seen a lot of positives coming out, it was indeed sad to note some media outlets in New Zealand still choose to look for negatives.

A number of reports have come out which again brings into question their motives and whether or not they have been to Fiji to see the situation on the ground today.

The progress Fiji has made over the past decade is tremendous and to achieve continuous growth is no easy feat. But our Government has managed this nonetheless.

Now it is about moving forward – indeed letting bygones be bygones.



Laybuy it 5squares


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.


Covid 19 - SPC
Total
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper