To ascertain current status quo in response to COVID-19, the Minister for Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport, Hon. Faiyaz Koya, this week held a series of consultations with private sector representatives, including the Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation (FCEF), Fiji Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI) and the Construction Industry Council.

Industry representatives were assured the Ministry of Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport’s
(Ministry) will continue being at the forefront of private sector reforms. Members of the industry were further informed that the Fijian Government is looking at all possible steps and policy changes to ensure the Fijian economy remains steadfast, especially
during this global pandemic.

The meeting with FCCI and FCEF also discussed Micro Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) support.
Hon. Koya confirmed the Ministry’s commitment in assisting MSMEs through incentives announced by the Hon. Attorney-General and Minister for Economy in Fiji’s Supplementary COVID-19 Response Budget earlier in March this year.

In addition, results of the Ministry and International Finance Corporation’s (IFC) joint business
survey on the impact of COVID-19 will also allow for a coordinated approach towards the revival and survival of the Fijian private sector.

Further emphasised was the need to utilise and encourage local skills in business. Businesses
and employers were also encouraged to use this time to up skill their human resources and invest in locals to undertake courses through tertiary institutes.

Under current circumstances, industry representatives were reminded to focus on survival strategies
as the foremost step to recovery of businesses and job security of employees.

Discussions concluded with the Hon. Minister assuring the private sector that the Fijian Government
is prepared to assist Fijian citizens and Fijian businesses with the collaboration of the Ministry to overcome this crisis.

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