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New Business Reform Team To Place Private Sector At The Forefront Of FRCS Reforms

It will also examine the effectiveness of trade and investment facilitation policies and identify opportunities for specialisation within FRCS to provide service offerings tailored to businesses of different sizes and sectors. Once finalised, the report will be presented to the Ministry of Economy.
31 Jul 2019 12:38
New Business Reform Team To Place Private Sector At The Forefront Of FRCS Reforms

A dynamic team of Fijian chief executive officers, entrepreneurs, and executives tasked to dramatically improve the processes associated with starting, sustaining and growing businesses in Fiji was announced last night by Government.

Through a newly formed Business Reform Committee Fiji is tapping into business acumen across a wide array of industries, perspectives and backgrounds to revolutionise the services offered by the Fiji Revenue and Customs Service (FRCS), guided by an overarching mandate to foster transparency, improve efficiency and support a more customer-oriented level of service, the committee will leverage the knowledge and experiences of its membership to compile a comprehensive report on how FRCS can better serve the private sector.

The committee’s report will specifically review tax and customs administration; the implementation of VAT Monitoring Systems; and FRCS’ stakeholder engagement strategies.

It will also examine the effectiveness of trade and investment facilitation policies and identify opportunities for specialisation within FRCS to provide service offerings tailored to businesses of different sizes and sectors. Once finalised, the report will be presented to the Ministry of Economy.

The committee was first announced by the Attorney-General and Minister for Economy, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, in the 2019-2020 National Budget Address.

“Fiji has charted historic economic progress because we are a government who recognises the importance of collaborating with our private sector partners to fuel the engine of the Fijian economy.

Running a successful enterprise isn’t always easy – no one understands the challenges better than women and men who have started and built business themselves. Through the Business Reform Committee, we’re bringing those invaluable experiences to bear in re-shaping FRCS into a more customer-focussed organisation. We cast a wide net in assembling this Committee.

We wrote to representative organisations across the economy – some responded and others did not. We also asked some specific members to join given their reputations and experiences within various sectors of the business community” the A-G said.

“The task of the Committee will be to root out unnecessary bureaucracy and inconsistency wherever it resides in FRCS and instil a new corporate culture within FRCS that is empathetic to the challenges business face and personalised to the unique needs of Fijian businesses of different sizes and from different industries.”

The committee will include Sandeep Chauhan of the Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation, Nitesh Lal of Fiji Institute of Accountants, Fantasha Lockington of the Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association, Saud Abdul Minam of the Association of Banks in Fiji; John Samisoni of Hot Bread Kitchen; Himat Lodhia of the Fiji Retailers Association, Adalene Tutu of Get Lean Fiji, Dilip Khatri of Jacks of Fiji Limited, Peter Rankin of the Association of Architects, Sanjay Kaba of the Fiji Institute of Engineers, Marita Manley of Duavata Sustainable Tourism Collective; Mohammed Khan of Fiji Van and Carrier Operators Association; Sandip Kumar of the Fiji Pharmaceutical Society; Lala Sowane of Pacific Destination of Fiji; Bhavesh Kumar of RC Manubhai and Company, Romit Meghji of P Meghji Group of Companies; George Goundar of Goundar Shipping; Dilen Kumar of Janty Kanvan; Nilesh Prasad of Mitchell Keil Law Firm, Justin Hunter of J Hunter Pearls Fiji, Dr Nur Bano Ali of Fiji Chamber of Commerce, Sangeeta Maharaj of Eden Bistro and Bar; Winston Hill of Boxfit Fiji; Kirit Patel of Motibhai Group; Kaushal Tappoo of Tappoo Group of Companies; Gordon Jenkins of Construction Industry Committee and Vera Chute of Women in Business.

The committee will be chaired by Dilip Khatri.

“I’m honoured by the invitation to join the Business Reform Committee. I think it’s wonderful that government is taking on input from such a robust range of industries to reform how businesses are registered and regulated in Fiji,” said Committee member Sangeeta Maharaj.

“Whether you’re starting a restaurant, running a market stall or leading a global financial institution, building a business takes limitless passion and total commitment.

Hard-working business owners deserve to operate in an environment where transparency is paramount and regulations are enforced in a clear and consistent manner.

I’m looking forward to working with my fellow Committee members and the Ministry of Economy to make life easier for businesses of all sizes throughout the country by putting FRCS’ focus more squarely on the businesses they are here to serve.”

Aside from private sector membership, the Committee will include representatives from the Reserve Bank of Fiji, the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism, the Ministry of Agriculture and the Solicitor General’s Office.

The Business Reform Committee will hold its first meeting in August 2019.

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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