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Trade Show A Success, 5 Happy Loan Recipients

The loan was handed to the recipients by the Minister for Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport Faiyaz Koya while he officiated at the Tanoa Hotel Group Fiji Trade Show at Tanoa Plaza Hotel Suva.
03 Oct 2020 13:56
Trade Show A Success, 5 Happy Loan Recipients
From left. Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) concessional loan recipient Simione Tuisawana, Tanoa Group Sales and Revenue Manager Kushend, Tanoa Area general manager Narend Kumar, Minister, Faiyaz Koya, CAPS Supervisor Felix Harm, loan recipients Mohammed Ishterhar Hussan, Mereani Qera, Unaisi Cakauniceva, Nikesh Prasad. Photo: Kelera Sovasiga

Five Fijians were all smiles yesterday as they were presented with their Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) concessional loan.

The loan was handed to the recipients by the Minister for Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport Faiyaz Koya while he officiated at the Tanoa Hotel Group Fiji Trade Show at Tanoa Plaza Hotel Suva.

Minister Koya says these recipients come from different backgrounds, but are brought together by their vigor to earn a living and contribute to the improvement of livelihoods of their families and communities.

Mereani Qera

Amongst the recipients was 33-year-old, Mereani Qera, married and with a son who is in class 7.

Ms Qera works as a medical recorder at the Makoi Health centre, has a side pastry business and owns a stall at the Laqere Market.

With the loan, she plans to expand her business by investing in a bigger oven to meet customers’ demand.

“I always wanted to have capital to run the business and I count myself blessed that I was one of the successful candidates to receive this grant. I believe I will be able to expand my business and also plan to develop into a bigger business in future.

“I always wanted to have a bigger oven since I started off using a smaller oven and sometimes when the order comes, I had to turn it down because of time consumption. I finally received this grant, I believe I will purchase a big oven and start rolling with baking cakes and pastries.”

Unaisi Cakauniceva

Unaisi Cakauniceva, will use the loan to diversify into seafood business, from her food pack and vegetable business. Ms Cakauniceva, 64-years of age, operates her business from her Vatuwaqa home.

“Since COVID-19 came in, business has gone down.

“Applying for this loan and now getting it will better my business in terms of getting of commodities.

“I am so happy and I hope the Government of the day will continue to help us, small business owners.”

The Naikorokoro, Ovalau said she was happy and thankful to the Government for the concessional loan.

Nikesh Prasad

Nikesh Prasad, who was in the construction industry and was laid off due to the pandemic.

Mr Prasad, with the loan, will start a BBQ stand in Nabua. At 20 years of age, Mr Prasad lives in Caubati.

“I use to work for Suva Plumbing Limited as a painter and got laid off from there.

“I found out about this micro finance initiative online on Facebook.

“My plan is to use the grant to open a BBQ stall.

“The location would depend on getting a good spot for customers.

“I want to thank my Mom and wife for helping me and also the Ministry of Tourism for their support.

“I am still young and this opportunity has allowed myself to have a better future in having my own business”

Simione Tuisawana

Similarly, Simione Tuisawana was laid off from the retail sector, due to the pandemic.

Now he will be able to support his family through his new business venture where he will purchase kava from his village and retail it in Suva.

Mohammed Ishterhar Hussan

Mohammed Ishterhar Hussan, a survey consultant, will use the loan to expand his business and open a branch in Nadi, employing two additional Fijians.

He will also use part of the funds to purchase farm implements for his sugarcane farm in Ba, which will enable him to make the two casual staff permanent.

Minister Koya said the MSMEs concessional loan was an initiative that towards existing businesses worst affected by the pandemic.

“They will also go to aspiring entrepreneurs – including those who may have been laid off, but have particular skills to start their own business.

“Over 5,000 applications have been assessed – out of which more than 3,700 have been approved at the value of $22.5 million.

“The Fiji Revenue and Customs Services has already disbursed close to $13 million to these MSMEs.

“This loan will give these Fijians working capital needs that will really help with their business.

“This is the level of collaboration and solidarity we need.”

About the Tradeshow

In terms of the Tanoa Tradeshow, this is a great opportunity for buyers and sellers alike, to discover the latest developments in the industry.

Mr Koya proudly acknowledged Y.P. Reddy’s leadership in expanding the current hospitality portfolio into sectors, such as education, construction and engineering equipment, retail, insurance and real estate, which puts them in an even greater position regionally – and globally.

“We’ve continuously advocated for diversification at all levels.

“Whether it is as individuals, as businesses, or even as industries.

“You’ve continued to keep faith in Fiji, and your potential, as a 100 per cent locally owned and managed company in business for over 50 years.

“I see a lot of familiar faces, which shows the importance of reinforcing networks between all stakeholders in the spirit of exploring new possibilities.

“You will be presenting new ideas with potential customers, through refreshed perspective, stepping away from traditional networking events, into immersive experiences that excite customers.

“As a nation, we pride ourselves in being the hub of the Pacific on many fronts.

“And we’re thrilled to witness the Reddy group grow over the last few decades and help us maintain the status quo.

Feedback: maraia.vula@fijisun.com.fj



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