Six Local Companies Receive Boost for Exports

Six Fijian companies today received Government grants totaling $1-million to help them increase their exports.

The individual  grants were given under the National Export Strategy (NES), which assists local companies to develop new export products, comply with international standards, and expand into new markets.

The Attorney-General and Minister for Industry and Trade, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, said that this was one of a number of the Bainimarama Government’s initiatives to encourage economic growth.

“The Bainimarama Government seeks to encourage competition and grow Fiji’s exports by providing assistance for specific projects that help companies add value to existing exports, develop new products and services, or pursue new opportunities.”

“In last year’s budget, $1-million was allocated to the NES,” he said. “I am very pleased that this entire amount has been disbursed to very deserving projects that will increase our export market and, in some cases, create news jobs.”

In 2012, the Ministry of Industry and Trade received applications from 11 companies for NES funding. 6 companies, whose proposals met the NES’s criteria, were selected:

1.   Bula Island Food Supplies, Nadi - $176,525. For the construction of a freezer room and Epoxy at the company’s factory in Nadi. This project will promote value addition of agro produce and increase Agro-produce exports.

2.  South Sea Slipway Limited, Suva -  $100,272. For the purchase of a computerized lathe machine for the company’s slipway at Walu Bay. The machine will ensure that the company provides high quality machinery for vessel repairs and will encourage more vessels to use the port of Suva for repairs rather than South East Asian ports.

3.    Food Processors (Fiji) Limited, Suva - $163,814. For the purchase of tetra packing machine for tetra packed coconut cream. Tetra packing will ensure that the company competes more effectively in the export markets of the USA, NZ and Australia where customers prefer attractive and environmentally friendly packaging.

4.   Pacific Fishing Company Limited, Levuka -$248,572. For the purchase of a thaw pump, shrink tunnel and loin molding machine, Retort Busse basket liner, new plant outer ceiling and perimeter fencing at the company’s factory in Levuka.  This will ensure that the company meets US FDA standards and avoids multiple breakdowns due to worn out/old machinery.

5.     Viti Foods Limited, Suva - $215,000. For the refurbishment of the staff locker room, washrooms and the construction of a walkway to meet HACCP requirements and increase exports to USA, Canada and Asia.

6.     Balthan Western Limited, Suva - $95,817. For the purchase of pineapple planting materials for production and export of pineapples from the company’s farm in Vanua Levu to New Zealand. This will increase rural employment and enhance exports from Vanua Levu.

The 2013 Budget allocated another $1-million to continue to support the NES in the coming year.

The NES has prioritised 6 sectors in Fiji to be eligible for this grant money: Forestry, Fisheries, Agro-Business, Mineral Water, Audio Visual and ICT.

The Ministry of Industry & Trade will soon be requesting submissions from local companies for the 2013 year.

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