The Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism, Premila Kumar has confirmed that the audio-visual industry is becoming a key contributor to the Fijian economy and has shown significant growth over the years.
The Minister stated that in the past 4 years, the industry has grown exponentially and there are strong signs that the industry will continue its growth trajectory.
“The industry, in the last 4 years, has shown exceptional performance. In 2015, there were 42 productions with a budgetary value of $9.9 million. This value increased to $264.7 million in 2018 and created approximately $271 million worth of new economic activities. The number of productions also increased by 152.4 percent in 2018”, Minister Kumar said.
The Minister added that the film productions local spend, which is the money spent for acquiring products and services in Fiji, increased from $5.8 million in 2015 to $96.9 million in 2018. At the same time, the increase in large film productions has led to increased employment of local talent.
Furthermore, local vendors are engaged to supply products and services to the productions. These include, hotel accommodation, land, air and sea transportation, catering, hardware and building materials, equipment hire and financial, insurance and professional services. This has also generated investment by locals into new areas of businesses to provide technical support to the industry, for example, set and prop designs.
“The increased and meaningful contribution of film industry to the Fijian economy and communities can be largely attributed to the generous incentives and pro-growth policies of the Fijian Government”.
“Large productions have also undertaken development and upgrade of infrastructure, such as roads and jetties in remote location to facilitate their access to certain filming locations that have generated widespread benefits for the locals residing in those areas,” Minister Kumar stated.
The Minister further said that 2019 looked to be just as good or potentially better in terms of increased productions to Fiji and benefits to Fijians.