1. SENIOR KOREAN INVESTORS MEETS WITH FOREIGN MINISTER – The Minister for Foreign Affairs Ratu Inoke Kubuabola met today with senior investment officials from Korea looking at investment opportunities in the country.
2. NEW SHIPPING SERVICES TO ADDRES MARITIME TRAVEL – The Eastern Division will see more frequent shipping services with the purchase of a ship next year to address problems faced by the public in outer islands.
3. RELIEF FOR SUVA MARKET WOMEN VENDORS – The construction of a new rest centre at the Suva market will primarily be for the benefit of women vendors who travel long hours to sell their produce at the market.
4. NEW FACILITY BRINGS JOY TO NABITU WOMEN – The Nabitu Women’s Group has thanked the government for supporting the development of a facility, that is first to be for tikina of Tokatoka in Tailevu to recognise the contributions and value women into their families and communities.
1 SENIOR KOREAN INVESTORS MEETS WITH FOREIGN MINISTER
The Minister for Foreign Affairs Ratu Inoke Kubuabola met today with senior investment officials from Korea looking at investment opportunities in the country.
Korea Specialty Contractor Financial Cooperative (KSCFC) President Mr Lee Jong Sang is in the country on a fact finding mission with interested partners in the areas of technical expertise and financing of the construction industry. He is accompanied by Mr Sang Suna Lee the Chairman of GIMCO.
KSCFC is a financial institution founded in 1988 under Korea’s Framework Act on the Construction Industry with the objective of promoting sound development. The company has supplied various financing services to members in the construction industry including 13.47 million guarantees amounting to US$178billion and other services such as financing and insurance.
At the initial stage the company started with 4,393 members and capital of US$37.2million, and has now grown to be one of the best and largest domestic financial institutions for the construction industry in Korea with 46,000 members and the capital of US$4billion. The Company also offer soft loan on construction projects.
The company looks forward to working with Fiji in construction financing “knowhow” and will provide customers with the best service as partners to contribute to the development of construction business, at the same time enhancing the position of construction workers.
The two senior officials met with Fiji’s foreign ministry senior officials including Fiji’s Ambassador to Korea Filimoni Kau.
2 NEW SHIPPING SERVICES TO ADDRESS MARITIME TRAVEL
The Eastern Division will see more frequent shipping services with the purchase of a ship next year to address problems faced by the public in outer islands.
Commissioner Eastern, Lieutenant Colonel Netani Rika highlighted this morning the lack of maritime travel is an issue that Government was trying to address.
“Government is now putting together plans for the purchase of a new ship next year to service the Eastern Division in bringing the much needed supplies to the people,” Mr Rika said.
He added that with the purchase of this new ship, the delivery of cargo to islands in the Eastern Division would be made easier.
“We are trying to get the funds for a new ship to assist in the shipment of cargo and passengers to the islands in order to help services to the division,” he said.
As Government waits to receive the new vessel, Commissioner Rika has asked for the public’s understanding during this period.
“I urge people in the Eastern Division to bear with us for the time being as we are trying to improve government services to the division.
“Once this new ship is purchased, I guarantee services to the division will be improved and shipment of supplies to and from the division will be made easier,” he said.
3 RELIEF FOR SUVA MARKET WOMEN VENDORS
The construction of a new rest centre at the Suva market will primarily be for the benefit of women vendors who travel long hours to sell their produce at the market.
The Suva City Council-funded Accommodation for Rural Women Vendors cost $150,000 and was opened today by the Minister for Women, Social Welfare and Poverty Alleviation, Dr Jiko Luveni.
Minister Luveni said the accommodation will bring relief to women who had to previously sleep on the pavements and verandas at the markets in Suva.
She told the council staff, market vendors and others present at the opening that Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama had insisted that the accommodation be built for the convenience and safety of the women vendors.
Dr Luveni said that during the Prime Minister’s tours to the rural areas he had noted the absence of facilities for rural vendors that needed a place to rest after travelling long hours to reach towns or cities.
“Gone are the days of those cold, uncomfortable nights when, on one hand we long for the warmth of a clean accommodation and on the other, we worry about leaving our produce unattended,” she said.
The capital city’s special administer, Mr Chandu Umaria, said 80 per cent of the market vendors were women and in building the accommodation, the council was addressing the plight of rural women.
He said, “The market generates economic activity and it is a hive of business activities amongst the rural dwellers, low income earners and various other customers”.
“In fact, this is where micro-finance and small businesses thrive; it is important that the market facilities are upgraded and developed to ensure such entities do succeed.”
Mere Tuirokoseka travels from Nabukaluka village in Naitasiri and had to previously stay with relatives in places like Naboro and Nasinu when she wanted to sell her produce at the Suva market.
Now, for as little as $2 she will be able to spend a comfortable night on the Thursday’s and Friday’s she comes to sell her produce at the accommodation which is situated just outside the market.
“I am very happy that they built a accommodation here, as my husband farms and I sell what we produce like dalo, cassava, chillies, banana, duruka and bele,” she said.
Similar accommodations have been built in the Western Division.
4 NEW FACILITY BRINGS JOY TO NABITU WOMEN
The Nabitu Women’s Group has thanked the government for supporting the development of a facility, that is first to be for tikina of Tokatoka in Tailevu to recognise the contributions and value women into their families and communities.
This week the Nabitu villagers witnessed the opening of a new Nabitu Women’s Centre by the Minister for Social Welfare, Women and Poverty Alleviation Dr Jiko Luveni.
The Centre has been built with the funding of $4606 from Ministry of Women and additional $4000 provided by Nabitu Women’s Group to complete the construction of this facility that is dedicated to the advancement of Nabitu women.
Mrs Aliti Tagivetaua, president of Soqosoqo Vakamarama Nabitu said that the Centre has brought joy and hope to some 80 women in Nabitu who depend on fishing for their day today living.
“The new Centre has given us happiness, for this is the first time in all these years for us women to actually see our dreams come to reality. We are indebted to the government, we would like to thank the Minister Dr Luveni for her Ministry’s commitment to seen the completion this new facility and we are proud that the government has recognized our role as women.
“Had it not been for Ministry’s assistance, we would still be struggling to collect the money to construct this much needed facility for our women here,” she said.
Mrs Tagivetaua further said that the Centre has provided a platform for Nabitu women to enhance their income generating skills, broaden their knowledge and elevate their financial status.
“The Nabitu Women’s Group is determined to coordinate the initiatives like catering for social events, weddings, birthdays, making handicraft’s, baking and selling homes made products like jam and honey. This would boost our income earnings and enable us to share our skills as well as invite service providers to disseminate information and raise awareness on issues relevant to women’s health, education and addressing violence. It will generate consolidated efforts to improve the lives of Nabitu women,” she added.
During the official opening, Minister Dr Luveni reiterated that the Nabitu Women’s Centre will be a great asset for the women to diversify their income generating.
“Women are important agents of change in their families and communities, real development cannot be achieved without empowering these agents of change. The Ministry will continue to reach out to rural women, create new opportunities for them to work together in improving their livelihood,” she said.
Mr Asaeli Kida, turaga-ni-koro for Nabitu said that opening of the Centre has inculcated a new hope for the people for Nabitu.
“It is encouraging to note that the men have come out in great numbers to support them and it is a reflection that men in Nabitu respect and value our women. We are all proud of this new Centre and it will continue to remind us that sustainable development can only be achieved through respecting and assisting our women to reach their full economic potential,” he said.