Staff of Fiji Pine with the Prime Minister Voereqe Bainimarama during their Christmas Bonus Payment in Drasa, Lautoka. Photo: DEPTFO
By LUKE NACEI
Christmas has certainly come early for the Fiji Pine Group employees, as they received a record-breaking Christmas Bonus Payment of over $650,000 – more than triple what was paid out this time last year.
The Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama while officiating at the event said the distribution of the bonus payment was a success and wouldn’t have been possible without the right leadership at the top.
“The leadership of your Board and management, under Faiz Khan, has brought energy, commitment and dedication to my Government’s vision for the development of Fiji’s forestry industry. And leadership has brought disciplined, prudent financial management and transparency to this organization, and instilled Fiji Pine with a spirit of partnership and collaboration with its management, landowners, and workers,” he said.
Each of them will receive $1000 as part of the $650,000.
Mr Bainimarama said the staff of Fiji Pine have shown their hard-work and commitment and that every cent was well deserved to them payment breaks down into $1,000
“While I’m sure that’s all exciting to hear, it should also make the men and women in this room feel very proud; for record bonuses only come from record results, and those results would not have been possible without each of you. It is your work, day in and day out, that has made this a great year for the company.
He also said the employees have helped lead the company through difficult times to reach unprecedented heights.
He reiterated that in 2010, the Fiji Pine Group was facing catastrophe.
“There were no payments to shareholders. There were no profits. And there certainly weren’t any bonus payments during the holidays, like the one you are all receiving today,” he said.
The company has achieved record profits these past six years, and have repaid over 60 million dollars in loans. They have also built a foundation for sustained growth – investing over 70 million dollars in strategic upgrades.
“You’ve welcomed a new Drasa Factory – a state-of-the-art timber facility; the Wariki wood chipping facility; and the brand new Vislanda sawmill, which I has honoured to open with you earlier this year.
“Working alongside our landowners, you’ve made this industry profitable and, more importantly, you’ve kept sustainability at the core of all of Fiji Pine’s development.”