Prime Minister Rear-Admiral (Ret’d) Hon. Voreqe Bainimarama paid tribute to more than 40 members of the Suva Retailers Association who have operated small or medium-sized enterprises within the Central Business District for more than fifty years.

While speaking at the Suva Retailers Recognition Night at the Suva Civic Auditorium, Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama said this is quite an accomplishment. It takes a great deal of hard work and vigilance to stay in business that long—to stay ahead of changing consumer tastes, to understand the economy and how it will affect business, to plan for growth and hedge against adversity.

“Through the decades, many of the shop owners in our CBD have truly lived their jobs –– some living right above the very same shops they ran.

The running of these businesses was often a true family affair, with husbands and wives, and children all involved. Suva has grown and modernised a great deal over the last 50 years, but these businesses have persevered. For all that has changed, your shops still bustle with shoppers on Saturdays, and you still supply variety and innovation to our local Suva economy,” the Prime Minister said.

He added that while no one can say how soon a return to “business-as-usual” maybe, #Fijians can be rest assured that Government will continue to do all it can to help everyone weather this storm.

He invited the retailers to come forward and partner with the Government in the “Stronger Together” Jobs Support Scheme which was announced last week. It is a hiring subsidy designed to help put #Fijians back in jobs. “I am happy to be here to help you recognize the businesses that have endured downtown for 50 years.

Your resilience has been tested time and again, and you have prevailed and grown,” the Prime Minister said.

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