NEWS

PM Launches National Plan

A National Development Plan which focuses on where Fiji intends to be in the next five years and 20 years has been launched in Bonn, Germany. It was launched by
16 Nov 2017 14:42
PM Launches National Plan

A National Development Plan which focuses on where Fiji intends to be in the next five years and 20 years has been launched in Bonn, Germany.

It was launched by Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama on the margins of COP23 on Tuesday. He is also COP23 president.

Mr Bainimarama highlighted that about 280 nationwide consultations were held before the Plan was finalised.

The entire NDP can be viewed on https://fiji2036.gov.fj.matatapacific.co/

On consultations

Consultations were paused while the country got back on its feet after the devastation of TC Winston but continued around Fiji few months later.

Attorney-General and Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said to realise Fiji’s development endeavours, the Plan was expected to inject over $50 billion of Government investment over the next 20 years.

This includes both funding for capital expenditure and expenditure for provision of social services. To finance this, the Fijian Government will mobilise its domestic revenues, both tax and non-tax, and access international financial resources, including funding from multilateral development partners. Self-funding of projects undertaken by State Owned Enterprises and municipal councils will complement funding from the central government. Financing through private sector partnerships and predictable climate finance will increasingly be a core source of financing.

Fiji had a national development plan before the coup of May 14 1987. After that, no such National Development Plan was formulated for close to 30 years.

Government also has another 178 potential sites for renewable energy from sources like bio-mass, hydro, solar, wind, geo-thermal and ocean waves identified.

“We will also encourage and incentivise energy conservation by raising our building and fuel-emission standards. This is the major component of Fiji’s Nationally Determined Contributions under the Paris Agreement, which seeks to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 per cent by 2030 from a business-as-usual scenario, using our 2013 greenhouse emissions as a baseline.

“Our population is projected to exceed 1.1 million in the next 20 years, and the vast majority will live in our towns and cities. Future development will be balanced to ensure a sustainable rural economy and vibrant, highly liveable urban centres with modern facilities and services.

“We will implement climate-change adaptation measures to ensure greater resilience to disasters. We will strengthen our existing capacities in areas like early-warning systems, weather-forecasting services and urban planning and development.

“New building standards and innovative traffic-management plans that ease congestion will be major components in urban planning. We will make our rural communities more resilient to the threats of climate change and natural disasters by improving infrastructure and providing adequate utilities,” Mr Bainimarama said.

“This ambitious long-term national development plan certainly will require substantial funding, skilled and dedicated people, modern technology and support from our partners and friends. To realise our vision of transforming Fiji, we will rely on strong coordination, cooperation and productive partnerships with all our stakeholders. I know we will have that, and it makes me even more optimistic for the future.”

Some of the Major Highlights Of the Plan Includes: 

All Fijians to have access to clean and safe drinking water in adequate quantities by 2031. Government plans a major push to increase accessibility to 92 per cent of the population from the current 78 per cent in the next five years.

All Fijians have access to electricity by 2021, with the renewable share of electricity generation reaching almost 100 per cent by 2030. In the next 5 years, Government plans to have three major hydro projects to boost renewable electricity supply on our largest island, Viti Levu, which is home to 70 per cent of Fiji’s population.

Fiji has a strategy to provide Fijians with affordable and adequate housing. It includes need to improve the skills of our rural carpenters through focused training programmes to enable them to build back better.

Funding will be increased towards agriculture research into crop varieties that are more resilient, and extension training to ensure our farming practices are equipped to adapt to changing weather patterns and climate change. This is targeted to improve our food security through the promotion of organic farming and increase production of traditional crops under programmes for niche agricultural and fisheries products.

Have 1 doctor per 1000 Fijians by 2021.

All of Fiji to have access to wired and wireless network coverage, with increased broadband capacity by 2021

Priority will be given to develop the skills of our poorest and most vulnerable Fijians in order to help them graduate out of poverty. Government will also give young Fijians the preparation they need to work in a modern economy, ensuring that they can take the quality jobs that are created.

One of the many visionary outcomes of the Plan is the drive to achieve a four-fold increase in GDP per capita by 2036 from the current GDP per capita of $10,000 to $40,000. This is based on the assumptions of sustained annual real GDP growth averaging 4 to 5 per cent per annum, investment levels of 25 per cent of GDP and an annual inflation target of 2 to 3 per cent.

Fiji also plans to reduce Government debt to 35 per cent of GDP by 2036, freeing up fiscal space to undertake targeted investments. This will help to create more jobs and reduce unemployment to below 4 per cent.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

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