Business Link Pacific Portal Launch to Benefit SMEs: Curr
Mr Curr said they hope that the portal will assist you all to do and achieve even more on your path of success
The launch of the Business Link Pacific Portal (BLP) will benefit Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs). New Zealand High Commissioner to Fiji Jonathan Curr made this comment yesterday while launching the portal at University of the South Pacific, Laucala Bay Campus, Suva. Mr Curr said New Zealand was proud to support Business Link Pacific and its work to help SMEs to access the quality, business advice they need to grow and expand.
“The portal was a key part of building a sustainable, regional network of local business advisory support services that would drive SME growth and prosperity.
“The portal offers a marketing tool to engage and provide financial benefits and subsidies to eligible clients, as well as organisation and business development support from technical consultants,” he said. Since 2017, Mr Curr said BLP has helped more than 160 SMEs in Fiji, Vanuatu, Samoa, and Papua New Guinea to improve and to grow their business operations.
“The BLP network of local business advisors in these countries has been instrumental in helping SMEs to increase revenue, productivity and jobs. “This is not just more profit or less cost for each business.” He said that’s anywhere between 800 and 8,000 employees who have indirectly benefitted through better performing businesses in those four countries. “That increase business performance contributes to higher economic growth, and sets a great example for other entrepreneurs wanting to grow their businesses.”
SMEs in Fiji
He stated that SMEs in Fiji already earn around 12 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and are even more important from an employment perspective, with around 60 per cent of Fijians in the workforce employed by an SME.
“The BLP portal we are launching is a big step forward in helping the SMEs to access the business advice they need.
“The portal enable SMEs and business advisors from across the Pacific, across a range of sectors and disciplines, to connect with and to support each other.
“We are talking about local advisers supporting local firms.” To date, he said Fiji had been an active participant in BLP, demonstrating the strength of the local business advisory network and the value they bring to SMEs.
He acknowledged the role that other organisations have played in bringing about the launch of this portal.
“This is a testament that BLP strikes a chord. “Growing businesses face gaps and challenges and they run lean and often sacrifice critical needs at the expenses of others. Getting great advice can help in so many ways.
“We hope that the portal will assist you all to do and achieve even more on your path of success.”
From left: New Zealand High Commissioner to Fiji Jonathan Curr, Christina Qio leads the Financial System Development Unit at the Reserve Bank of Fiji, Women Entrepreneurs Business Council Vice Chair Bernadette Nicholls, Webmedia South Pacific executive director Steve Reid, Chef Lance Seeto, New Zealand Entreprenuers Wyndi and Eli Tagi, and Business Link Pacific Business Operation Amrita Midha during the portal launch on August 2, 2019.