Co-op­er­a­tion With Govt To Ex­pand Eco­nomic Base, Grow Busi­ness Here

Fiji Sun - - Sunbiz - FILIPE NAIGULEVU EDITED BY: RACHNA LAL Feed­back: filipe.naigulevu@fi­jisun.com.fj

The 2016/2017 Bud­get has en­cour­aged the Fiji Cham­ber of Com­merce and In­dus­try as it now hopes to cap­i­talise on some of Gov­ern­ment ini­tia­tives. To kick start, the cham­ber will host the Fiji Busi­ness Fo­rum to­mor­row at the Hol­i­day Inn in Suva. Cham­ber vice-pres­i­dent, Nur Bano Ali, said: “This fo­rum agenda is usu­ally fo­cussing on pre­sen­ta­tions to the Bud­get or dis­cus­sions on the Bud­get. “We noted from the Bud­get ad­dress the past month, some key ar­eas of fo­cus for Gov­ern­ment in­cludes ex­pand­ing our eco­nomic base and real­is­ing the po­ten­tial of small and medium en­ter­prises. “We un­der­stand there is go­ing to be a coun­cil set up for that pur­pose to be chaired by the Prime Min­is­ter. “The Fiji Cham­ber of Com­merce wants to cap­i­talise on these ini­tia­tives and part­ner with Gov­ern­ment and sup­port these kind of ini­tia­tives be­cause our fo­cus is grow­ing busi­ness in Fiji. “Our fo­rum theme is ‘Grow­ing Busi­nesses in Fiji’ be­cause we see Gov­ern­ment is in­tend­ing to do that so we want to just ride on the back of the same mo­men­tum and be part­nered with them.

“In the end, that’s what the Fiji Cham­ber of Com­merce is all about and our con­cern is to grow busi­nesses and to realise all the po­ten­tial that we pos­si­bly have in that area.”

Speak­ers

Amongst the speak­ers will be the At­tor­ney-Gen­eral and Min­is­ter for Econ­omy, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum and Min­is­ter for In­dus­try, Trade and Tourism, Faiyaz Sid­diq Koya. Ms Ali said the cham­ber wanted both these Min­is­ters to at­tend be­cause that was where the their li­ai­son points were. “We be­lieve our in­put is use­ful and they are tak­ing heed of what we’re say­ing and now is the time to work with them for the growth of busi­ness,” she said. As an­nounced in the Bud­get, Gov­ern­ment is plan­ning on hav­ing all the Min­istries do their three­year Bud­get fore­cast to look at things in a more longer term. Ms Ali said they hope to play a role in this as well. The cham­ber is ex­pect­ing 150 to 200 peo­ple to at­tend this fo­rum which will in­volve the pri­vate sec­tor in the process. The fo­rum has been spon­sored by Bri­tish Amer­i­can Tobacco and Fi­jian Hold­ings Lim­ited. Ms Ali said they wanted to hear from Gov­ern­ment on how they plan to ex­pand our eco­nomic base and at the same time con­trib­ute from their end where they feel can be de­vel­oped.

In­ter­ac­tion

Fiji Cham­ber of Com­merce vi­cepres­i­dent Nouzab Fa­reed, said: “There will be a lot of ques­tions and an­swers and a lot of in­ter­ac­tive dis­cus­sions and that is one spe­cial fea­ture of these sorts of fo­rum,” he said.

“We are thank­ful for all the min­is­ters that have agreed to come at a short no­tice. “At the end of the fo­rum, we will be mak­ing an of­fi­cial com­mu­ni­ca­tion with the pub­lic shar­ing with the me­dia what ex­actly has hap­pened and what is the cham­ber’s view on how we want to take this to the next level.”

Photo: FILIPE NAIGULEVU

Fiji Cham­ber of Com­merce and In­dus­try vice-pres­i­dent Nur Bano Ali dur­ing a press con­fer­ence in Suva yes­ter­day.

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