1. FIJI HAS MORE OPPORTUNITIES THAN SINGAPORE – Fiji has more economic potential and opportunities when compared to other countries such as Singapore due to the existence of natural resources.
2. GOVERNMENT POSES CHALLENGE TO BUSINESS HOUSES – The Minister for Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment Jone Usamate has challenged Fiji’s private sector to work towards not only attaining more returns but also work on inclusivity by creating more jobs.
1.FIJI HAS MORE OPPORTUNITIES THAN SINGAPORE
Fiji has more economic potential and opportunities when compared to other countries such as Singapore due to the existence of natural resources.
This was highlighted by the creator of ‘Think Matrix’ in Australia, Mr Roger La Salle, who was a keynote speaker at the 2013 Topex Conference at the Intercontinental Golf and Spa Resort at Natadola yesterday.
Comparing the geographical differences between the two countries, Mr La Salle highlighted that Singapore was much smaller in size than Fiji but continued to lead other countries in terms of economic development.
“Singapore can fit into Fiji some five or six times and even buys its water from Malaysia,” Mr La Salle said.
Mr La Salle said Fiji is naturally blessed with resources which gives it the competitive advantage over Singapore.
He added that problems such as land and dealing with legislations in a country with a multi – racial population was nothing new.
“What is new in this? These are the same we face everywhere in the world so I feel that people need to put their differences aside and work towards a better Fiji where there are opportunities because together (all races) Fiji is very strong,” Mr La Salle said.
Mr La Salle commended and thanked the Fijian Government for incorporating policies into the new Constitution which would stop race based issues.
He further added that Fiji could improve in some areas such as in the minimum wage in certain sectors.
“Fiji’s minimum wages in some areas are even lower than China’s and I think Government will look into this so that poverty could be eliminated,” Mr La Salle said.
2. GOVERNMENT POSES CHALLENGE TO BUSINESS HOUSES
The Minister for Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment Jone Usamate has challenged Fiji’s private sector to work towards not only attaining more returns but also work on inclusivity by creating more jobs.
The minister said business growth coupled with more jobs would not only benefit businesses and the country but would also increase the purchasing power of every Fijian.
Mr Usamate made the comments while addressing the Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation (FCEF) Topex Conference at Natadola yesterday.
“Work not only on your company returns but on inclusivity; by economic growth that is coupled with job creation,” the Labour Minister said.
“We must create jobs — not just wealth — because we need people to benefit from growth. We want people to have wages and salaries, so that they can look after their own needs, so that they can pay taxes and thus assist Government carry out its own responsibilities.”
Minister Usamate said opportunities presented themselves for further economic growth, urging businesses to make it a priority that such growth be as ‘job – rich’ as possible.
“I invite you to share my belief, that a successful Fiji, a sustainable Fiji is only possible through an inclusive Fiji. That an inclusive Fiji will benefit every citizen in the long run, it will benefit our country in the long run, and it will benefit our grandchildren— and that it is the best way to make Fiji really the way the world should be.”