1. FIJI ESTABLISHES PERMANENT REPRESENTATIION WITH GLOBAL ENERGY BODY – Fiji’s envoy to the United Arab Emirates, Ambassador Robin Nair has presented his credentials as Fiji’s Permanent Representative to the International Renewable Energy Agency commonly known as IRENA.
2. AGRICULTURE MINISTER MEETS WITH DREKETI RICE FARMERS – The Minister of Agriculture, Inia Seruiratu met with farmers in Dreketi in Vanua Levu this week and stressed the importance of working in partnership with Government.
3. DIPLOMATIC SUPPORT FOR FIJIAN COMPANIES IN JAPAN – Fiji’s Embassy to Japan has lent its support to Fijian companies exhibiting their trade products at the 2014 International Private Label Show in Tokyo.
4. “LET’S TAKE AWAY THE ELEMENTS OF DIFFICULTY”: MINISTER SERUIRATU – The Minister for Rural & Maritime Development, Inia Seruiratu has called on senior officials in his ministry to ensure that the public do not have difficulty in accessing Government services and resources.
5. WOMEN’S GROUP COMMITS TO BUILDING STRENGTH AND CAPACITY – Women living in informal settlements and rural areas in the Lami – Nausori corridor will be provided the necessary assistance to establish income generating projects.
1 FIJI ESTABLISHES PERMANENT REPRESENTATION WITH GLOBAL ENERGY BODY
Fiji’s envoy to the United Arab Emirates, Ambassador Robin Nair has presented his credentials as Fiji’s Permanent Representative to the International Renewable Energy Agency commonly known as IRENA.
Ambassador Nair presented his credentials to the IRENA director general, His Excellency Adnan Amin this week.
IRENA is an intergovernmental organisation, hosted in Abu Dhabi that supports countries in their transition to a sustainable energy future, and serves as the principal platform for international cooperation, a centre of excellence, and a repository of policy, technology, resource and financial knowledge on renewable energy. IRENA promotes the widespread adoption and sustainable use of all forms of renewable energy, including bio-energy, geothermal, hydro power, ocean, solar and wind energy in the pursuit of sustainable development, energy access, energy security and low-carbon economic growth and prosperity.
In presenting his credentials, Ambassador Nair said that Fiji valued the Forum provided by IRENA for international discussions on cooperation towards a sustainable energy future, particularly for small island developing countries. He added that Fiji appreciated and was already using the technical assistance capability provided by IRENA. He said that a technical team from IRENA is currently in Fiji carrying out a renewable readiness assessment for Fiji.
The Director General Adnan Amin welcomed Fiji as one of the first countries to accredit a Permanent Representative to IRENA. In his statement, he highlighted Fiji’s support for IRENA by recalling that Fiji’s Prime Minister, Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama himself hadattended the first IRENA General Assembly. He commented that IRENA provides special attention to the needs of the Pacific Islands.
He said that IRENA will be represented at the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States to be held in Apia, this year. He recalled that IRENA was represented at the Inaugural Meeting of Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF) in Fiji and he hoped he would be able to personally attend the Second Meeting of the PIDF.
2 AGRICULTURE MINISTER MEETS WITH DREKETI RICE FARMERS
The Minister of Agriculture, Inia Seruiratu met with farmers in Dreketi in Vanua Levu this week and stressed the importance of working in partnership with Government.
Mr Seruiratu informed the farmers that they needed to help themselves before seeking assistance for instance like meeting the one third contribution and two thirds of assistance that Government provides for agriculture activities.
The meeting also provided the Minister an opportunity to update farmers on the latest developments taking place that are aimed at improving rice production.
“Rewa Rice Mills will also be purchasing a new rice mill in the area within two month together with a proper generator to ensure that electricity does not become a problem with the running of the mill,” Mr Seruiratu added.
Payara Singh Jajja, a 55 year old Dreketi farmer who was present at the meeting said “Government is doing a fantastic job so the people in this area need to change their mindset and have a positive outlook on things around them.”
Another farmer, Kumar Prasad of Nobulu in Dreketi said, “we are happy what the government has offer to us today in meeting our request.”
The minister is expected to meet with other farming officials later this week.
3 DIPLOMATIC SUPPORT FOR FIJIAN COMPANIES IN JAPAN
Fiji’s Embassy to Japan has lent its support to Fijian companies exhibiting their trade products at the 2014 International Private Label Show in Tokyo.
The international show which opened this week is seeing the promotion of Fijian products by renowned companies, FMF Foods Ltd [FMF] and Punja & Sons Ltd. Both companies were chosen by the Pacific Island Centre and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, to participate at the event.
Despite cold weather conditions in Tokyo, Fiji’s Ambassador to Japan Isikeli Mataitoga and his diplomatic staff from the embassy have been supporting and assisting the companies at the exhibition.
This is an important event in terms of understanding Japanese importers requirements for manufactured goods coming into Japan from outside, as regards packaging and labeling of products. These are important elements of the export chain that countries like Fiji and in particular companies that exports to the Japanese must fully appreciate and accommodate in their product manufacturing chain.
The 4-day international event provides an excellent opportunity for the representatives of the two Fijian companies to meet business contact from Japan and Asia, who may be keen to import Fijian made goods exhibited by the two companies.
Ambassador Mataitoga highlighted the importance of engaging embassy staff with those companies promoting Fijian products.
“It actually makes the diplomats appreciate and value the importance of our Fijian businesses and the challenges they face. It also provides an opportunity to discuss with Fijian business representatives present, how to best assist them in niche market identification of their Fijian made products in Japan and in other market specific information relevant for Japan.”
Ambassador Mataitoga said that these support measures are also part of their core work in trade diplomacy and in assisting Fijian Made Goods enter the Japanese market.
Diplomats from the embassy will be stationed at the event this week to assist the two companies in promoting Fijian products to both the Japanese and international market.
4 “LET’S TAKE AWAY THE ELEMENTS OF DIFFICULTY”: MINISTER SERUIRATU
The Minister for Rural & Maritime Development, Inia Seruiratu has called on senior officials in his Ministry to ensure that the public don’t have difficulty in accessing Government services and resources.
The comment was made by the Minister for Rural & Maritime Development and National Disaster Management, Mr Inia Seruiratu at a recent briefing held at the Provincial Administrator Kadavu’s office.
He urged officers serving in the province of Kadavu to explore economic opportunities on behalf of the Fijians living there.
“Kadavu has a lot to contribute to the economy. We need to take away the element of difficulty from the people to enable them to realise the many untapped opportunities available for them.
“We also need to improve the existing infrastructure and create employment for rural people,” Minister Seruiratu added.
Minister Seruiratu further emphasized that Kadavu has a lot to offer to the nation if the right development is allowed to take place.
In responding to the Minister’s call – Divisional Commissioner Eastern, Mr Netani Rika said that a number of development projects are expected to take place on the island this year.
This ranges from infrastructural developments; upgrading of schools; economic generating projects rural housing and self-help projects to name a few.
5 WOMEN’S GROUP COMMITS TO BUILDING STRENGTH AND CAPACITY
Women living in informal settlements and rural areas in the Lami – Nausori corridor will be provided the necessary assistance to establish income generating projects.
The Ministry of Women director Arieta Moceica, while opening a day long capacity building Workshop for Fiji Women’s Federation (FWF) Advisory Committee, said up-to $5000 from the budget of $50,000 will be provided per women’s group to assist them with income generating projects.
She said that their main objective is to see that women are engaged in projects which are profitable and sustainable.
“This year we are really going back and looking at building quality into these projects.”
“We have women NGOs who have been in existence for more than twenty years at least so you have a wealth of experience within your rank,” Mrs Moceica said.
“Your skills will transfer with sisters helping sisters but also you are going to build into them some level of governance.”
She added that Government’s investment in women adds value when reforms target them at both a rural or community level approach.
The ministry has already received two proposals from Pan Pacific South East Women’s Association (PPSEAWA) within the Lovoni Settlement and Muslim Women’s League in Makoi to carry out necessary training and capacity building based on funding.
The Fiji Muslim Women’s League President, Nisha Buksh said today’s meet will help the women in baking, sewing, backyard gardening, poultry farming to come out of poverty.
“We are trying to encourage and empower women to get into projects like this so can also make use of their own products and save money as well in order to rise out of poverty.”
The women’s group will identify the rural women’s settlement or peri-urban settlement within the Suva-Lami and Suva-Nausori corridor
The women’s NGO will be taught how the project proposals are written for the Department of Women and how they do their monitoring and evaluation.