- GLOBAL GREEN INSTITUTE EYES FIJI AS HOST COUNTRY FOR REGIONAL OFFICE – At a meeting this morning with Fiji’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon. Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, a delegation from the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) followed up on their interest to serve the Pacific Island countries that are members of the Institute.
- GOVERNMENT SELECTS SHOP N SAVE TO REDEVELOP NAUSORI MARKET SITE – Government has awarded a tender agreement to Shop N Save to redevelop the existing municipal market site into the new Rewa City Shopping Centre.
- INFORMATION SHARING CRUCIAL FOR DEVELOPMENT – The use of information combined with modern technology is critical to optimizing the use of land and resources for development says the Ministry of Sugar Industry.
- MOU TO QUICKEN HOUSING MATERIALS PROVISION – The Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Carpenters Hardware Limited for the procurement of housing materials for the Ministry’s rural housing assistance.
- BRIDGE WORKSHOP TO STRENGTHEN ELECTORAL PROCESS – Stakeholders from key pacific countries converged at the “Building Resources in Democracy, Governance and Elections (BRIDGE)” workshop held in Suva today.
- DISASTER OFFICIALS PARTICIPATE AT REGIONAL FIRST AID TRAINING – 20 staff from the Ministry of Rural & Maritime Development and National Disaster Management recently participated at a Pacific First Aid Training.
- Expo to connect women to markets – The National Women’s Expo and Divisional Craft Show 2015 was officially launched today by the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Hon. Rosy Akbar.
1 GLOBAL GREEN INSTITUTE EYES FIJI AS HOST COUNTRY FOR REGIONAL OFFICE
At a meeting this morning with Fiji’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon. Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, a delegation from the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) followed up on their interest to serve the Pacific Island countries that are members of the Institute.
The GGGI delegation is led by Dr. Imran Habib Ahmad, Director, East Asia and Pacific Green Growth Planning & Implementation. They are in the country to follow up on their request to establish an office in Fiji as well as establishing a Memorandum of Understanding on technical assistance projects to be provided by the GGGI.
Dr. Ahmad also thanked the Minister for his support towards the engagements with the GGGI. The GGGI can assist Fiji in issues related to global climate change, energy, and policies for green growth, such as sustainable, climate resilient and low-carbon economic development.
The GGGI is a non-profit, globally represented international institution, with an interdisciplinary, and multi-stakeholder approach, driven by the needs of emerging and developing countries. Fiji became a member of the GGGI in March 2014.
2 GOVERNMENT SELECTS SHOP N SAVE TO REDEVELOP NAUSORI MARKET SITE
Government has awarded a tender agreement to Shop N Save to redevelop the existing municipal market site into the new Rewa City Shopping Centre.
Minister for Local Government, Housing and Environment Hon. Parveen Kumar, while making the announcement in Suva today, said Shop N Save would be subleasing the site for the next 50 years.
Minister Kumar said people of Nausori looked forward to the development, which would be unique and contribute positively in improving Nausori Town’s landscape.
“Shop N Save shall pay a premium of $2million to the Nausori Town Council upfront and shall pay annual rental of $100,000 per year which shall be reassessed and increased by 10 per cent at the interval of every five years. First 10 years rental assessment shall be paid in advance,” Minister Kumar said.
The project developers under private partnership arrangement will pay annual town rates to the Nausori Town Council.
Shop N Save has committed to invest $40million in the shopping centre project and will commence construction as soon as the architectural, engineering and documentation processes are completed.
“The construction will start within six months of signing the lease agreement and we are looking at two weeks to sign lease agreement.”
“This is an offer to Shop N Save as the successful bidder to redevelop the existing Nausori market site and they have three days to come with acceptance to undertake the project development,” Minister Kumar said.
The project will provide 100 car parks, two floor retail centres, two floor office centres and two floor hotel/apartment centres with a cinema.
3 INFORMATION SHARING CRUCIAL FOR DEVELOPMENT
The use of information combined with modern technology is critical to optimizing the use of land and resources for development says the Ministry of Sugar Industry.
The comments were made by the Ministry’s acting permanent secretary Parmesh Chand at the day – long forum on Geographical Information System and Remote Sensing (GIS/RS) User Interface Forum at the First Landing resort in Vuda, Lautoka today.
Mr Chand says modern technology provides opportunities to promote investment and economic development.
“Due to the vast improvement in technology and recognition of the importance of encompassing sea, air and land information, Government revived and strengthened the Fiji Geo-Spatial Information Management Council formerly known as the Fiji Land Information Council. This is intended to promote the development and management of Geo-Spatial information in Fiji on a more integrated and comprehensive basis,” he said.
“Recognising the importance of Geo-Spatial Information, Fiji pushed for adoption of a special resolution on this subject at the United Nations General Assembly. It was for the first time recognized and accepted by the General Assembly.”
Fiji launched the sugar industry GIS portal in November last year boosted the Ministry of Sugar’s justification for its 2015 budgetary submission resulted in a budget provision for Sugar Cane Industry GIS of $938,170.00.
“I am sharing this with you today because this is part of the objective of this Forum to share information, data and relevant experiences so that members could learn and benefit from them. For what is it is worth, the sustainability of this GIS/RS User Forum will require huge leaps of faith. Users must come together in faith to share information. Without this, it may be difficult,” Mr Chand added.
“Sustainability is about relevance. It is our plea to you all, as members of the GIS/RS User Forum, that you will continue to work together through a spirit of open dialogue, willingness to share data and information, establishing communication links, both domestic and offshore and providing access to the latest software for the benefit of all.”
4 MOU TO QUICKEN HOUSING MATERIALS PROVISION
The Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Carpenters Hardware Limited for the procurement of housing materials for the Ministry’s rural housing assistance.
The MOU seals a contract with Carpenters Hardware to supply building materials for 24ft by 16ft houses under the Rural Housing Scheme and 18ft by 18ft houses under the Poverty Alleviation Program for a period of 2 years.
The Ministry’s acting permanent secretary for Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management, Mr. Setareki Tale said the MOU was necessary for the quick supply of housing materials and has followed the correct tender processes.
“Government’s budget for rural housing assistance has doubled this year relative to the demand.”
“This agreement with Carpenters Hardware should help us meet that high demand and facilitate housing constructions more expeditiously.”
“Government is committed to better service delivery and in this case, faster too”.
Carpenters Hardware representatives told the acting permanent secretary of their commitment and indicated their willingness to work with government in meeting the demand for materials.
5 BRIDGE WORKSHOP TO STRENGTHEN ELECTORAL PROCESS
Stakeholders from key pacific countries converged at the “Building Resources in Democracy, Governance and Elections (BRIDGE)” workshop held in Suva today.
The Fijian Elections Office Supervisor of Elections, Mohammed Saneem highlighted to stakeholders from Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Republic of the Marshall Islands and Vanuatu on the importance of the training.
“This training is a foundation program and it is essential that we learn the basics so that we can develop further,” Mr Saneem said.
“BRIDGE is a popular program and the course has been running in 93 countries around the world and has trained over 18,000 people.”
Mr Saneem adds this indicates the credibility of such programs itself in assisting the election region bodies holding free, fair and credible elections.
Australian Electoral Commission Director International Services, Mr Jiv Sekhon said the training brings networks together to discuss on the election management processes and ways to improve it.
“It is an opportunity for the region and FEO to be assisted with capacity building and training.”
6 DISASTER OFFICIALS PARTICIPATE AT REGIONAL FIRST AID TRAINING
20 staff from the Ministry of Rural & Maritime Development and National Disaster Management recently participated at a Pacific First Aid Training.
Facilitated by the Fiji Red Cross, the training covered eight modules and introduced participants to topics such as Assessment of Emergency; Primary Assessment; Resuscitation; Bleeding and Shock; Medical Conditions; Muscle and Bole injuries; Burns and Poisons and Heat conditions.
The Ministry’s acting permanent secretary, Mr Setareki Tale commended the facilitators for the well-delivered training. He also acknowledged the participants for their continued enthusiasm during the two-day training and said, “I am hopeful that the knowledge gained will be of assistance to you especially during times of emergency or disasters.”
Participant Filomena Wilson said that the course has enabled her to apply basic first aid knowledge and to be ready for emergencies in the workplace.
“It has been very beneficial and helpful in recognising signs of emergencies.”
“We were put in practical situations and assessed on CPR application, managing of infant chocking and identifying and assessing bleeding situations.”
“The much knowledge gained will be helpful when immediate medical personnel aren’t readily available.”
7 Expo to connect women to markets
The National Women’s Expo and Divisional Craft Show 2015 was officially launched today by the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Hon. Rosy Akbar.
The event was attended by government Ministers’, Permanent Secretaries, Diplomats, corporate organisations and women’s Non-Government Organisations.
Minister Akbar emphasized that the focus of this year’s National Women’s Expo will promote the production of export driven Fijian Made Products.
“The 2015 Expo theme “Connecting Women to Markets – Make it Happen” is relevant and blends so well with the initiative of the Fijian Government. The 2nd National Women’s Expo will be staged at the Vodafone Arena from the 14th to 16th October 2015. In the Expo launching today, I also launch the divisional craft shows to be held throughout the 4 divisions.
“Instead of bringing all women’s groups to the capital, we are organizing divisional shows and competition. We want a smaller number for 2015 but, with tested, proven quality products that meet the standards set by the relevant authorities. My Ministry will work with the Fiji Arts Council to judge the handicraft. Each divisional craft show will have the Fiji Arts Council certified examiners examining the handiwork and winners will be picked. These winners from each divisional craft show will be guaranteed a fully sponsored spot at the National Expo in October,” Minister Akbar said.
The Ministry has also engaged an event’s organiser to plan and coordinate the National Women’s Expo 2015.
“Groups or individual women judged to have potential will be provided advice on how to better their products to be eligible for the “Fijian-made” Brand and stand a chance of partial sponsorship. In partnership with the Fiji Arts Council and the Ministry of Industry and Trade, we are assisting these rural artisans ready their products for “Fijian-made” Brand. To make all of this happen needs an event’s organizer working with my team.
“It is our big intention that we will promote the business mindsets in our women and propel our talents and skills to the export market. The Fijian Government has given us new opportunities that were not there in the past. It is a gateway for self-reliance, raised self-esteem and confidence in women,” the Minister for Women reiterated.
The president of Shrest Mother’s Club, Mrs Savita Sharma acknowledged the Bainimarama Government for its vision on empowering women through a national event such as the women’s expo.
“The First National Women’s Expo 2014 was a milestone event, it was first ever opportunity for most of us to participate in a national event of such a nature that allows women like us who engage in small time livelihood projects to display our talents reflected through our products to such a large audience for a period of three days.
“We are extremely thankful to the Bainimarama Government for its commitment to the development of women. Today’s event is another proof of their commitment to providing sustainable and fulfilling programs for the women of Fiji,” Mrs Sharma said.