Caption: Fiji Ports Corporation Limited Board chairman Tevita Kuruvakadua presents the dividend cheque to Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.
Fiji Ports Corporation Limited has made its highest ever dividend payment to the Government – up almost 30 per cent in 2012 over the previous financial year.
The company – which is entirely public owned – today handed a cheque for $3.65-million to the Attorney General and Minister for Public Enterprise, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.
It is the Government’s share of the 30 per cent net profit increase after tax of $7.3 million that Fiji Ports Corporation recorded in 2012. The rest is being ploughed back into the company to improve its infrastructure.
The rise is largely due to strong performances by the two subsidiary companies of Fiji Ports – Ports Terminal Limited and Fiji Ships and Heavy Industries. PTL’s revenue went up by 17 per cent and FSHIL recorded growth of 12 per cent.
The increases come on the back of a big increase in the number of ships visiting Fijian ports last year. A record 1,530 foreign going vessels – 700 of them carrying cargo – called at the two biggest ports in Suva and Lautoka.
In accepting the dividend payment on behalf of the Government, the Minister paid tribute to the Board, management and staff of Fiji Ports Corporation and predicted even healthier profits to come.
Highlighting the Government’s joint venture partnership with the Aitken Spence company of Sri Lanka, the Minister said Fiji was finally in a position to capitalise on its position as the hub of the South Pacific, which had been promised by successive governments but never delivered.
He said the necessary discipline had now been put in place through the private public partnership to remove unnecessary overhead costs for shipping companies and achieve better turnaround times and higher volumes in the ports of Suva and Lautoka.