PM Bainimarama – A Strategic Framework for Change
Exports of gold and fish have increased. However, performances of other industries, such as garments, timber and mineral water have been affected by the weak demand from our trading partner economies.
We remain optimistic that the recent devaluation will spur more demand from our trading partners for these products. We are also hopeful that as these economies recover next year, we will benefit further from higher exports.
On the major investment front, current developments include the construction of the Nadarivatu hydro dam. Work on this project started in April this year and is expected to be completed in mid-2011 contributing around 41.7 mega watts of electricity. The completion of the Laucala Island Resort and Natadola Bay Resort were important additions to Fiji’s tourism industry. The Naisoso Island project is also progressing well.
Monetary and credit conditions improved significantly since April this year. Commercial banks lending rates have started to fall and the full impact of the policies on interest rates announced by the Reserve Bank of Fiji will be noticed in the coming months. Deposit rates have also started to rise after remaining very low in the past.
The banking system liquidity, that is, the amount of money available for banks to lend, has increased considerably from very low levels early in the year to around $150 million. This itself will see credit conditions easing up further in the coming months and will assist greatly in businesses being able to borrow additional amounts to grow their businesses and to start new projects.