Vuvale Magazine | Edition 9

The global pandemic, adding to the existing climate related challenges, have placed impact investment at the forefront of Pacific countries' agenda. Over the past year, the Fiji Trade Commission to ANZ has contributed towards this goal, by focusing on the promotion of green and blue economy's projects, women empowerment and initiatives that will enhace the livelihood of remote communities.

Within the private sector Matanataki is leading the space; the Fiji-based organisation brought together business developers, finance experts, conservationists and creatives, to support the development of green and blue businesses in Fiji and the wider Pacific.

Earlier in December, together with Investment Fiji they hosted an Investment Readiness for Private Sector Finance Webinar. The main speakers, Jodi Smith and Paul Chatterton, shared insights on what investors are looking for, the importance of environmental impact, and the business opportunity when investing in the blue economy.

It is clear that the ESG element has become increasingly important to attract investors. Consequently, the FTC has been liaising with various international organisations to provide assistance to Fijian businesses that aim to reach the investment readiness level.

So far, a number of Fijian enterprises have been connected with the Private Financing Advisory Network (PFAN), a global network of climate financing experts and GET Invest, a finance catalyst for renewable energy projects in developing countries. In addition, the Office has been supporting the United Nations Capital Development Fund to build a pipeline of SDG's oriented investable assets in Fiji.

To find out more about Fiji's blue and green investment opportunities, visit www.investinfiji.today and connect with our offices.

The New Zealand FMCG (fast-moving consumer goods) retailing sector is highly competitive and rapidly changing; FMCG retailers are defined by the high volume and low margin nature of their business. Within food-specific retailing, convenience stores and food specialists appear to be evolving from independent into extensive supermarkets. This means stringent requirements for producers and manufacturers that are looking to supply their products on the shelves.

As part of the Fiji Trade Commission to New Zealand's efforts to continue building export capability and supporting Fijian suppliers, the Office organised a two part webinar series concerning how to enter and stand out in New Zealand’s FMCG sector. The events were supported by Investment Fiji and the FNZ Business Council.

The Office hosted the first webinar in November presented by Mr. Tom Fisiihoi, FMCG Coach & Advisor at Ranged.

With over a decade of experience in the sector, Tom shared valuable information about New Zealand's grocery landscape, helped navigate the category review requirements and informed the attendees on the latest packaging and branding trends in the New Zealand market.

The second webinar was held in December welcoming Lily Vallance, Creative Director at Studio Lily Kate. During the session, Lily touched on the visual look and feel of creating a cohesive brand; plus, the creative process and strategy behind it. Lily also presented a case study of the Fijian brand Island Style PNB; by showcasing the main differences between their old and new branding she explained the key elements to consider when building the company’s brand image.

With over 200 registrants, the webinars succeeded in providing Fijian SMEs with the must know information on how to STAND OUT in New Zealand’s FMCG sector.

The trial for commercial importation of kava into Australia commenced on December 1st. The Australian government is intending to step up its commitment to the Pacific through this Kava Pilot Program, assisting kava producers in Fiji and allowing kava to be imported as food from December 2021 till December 2023.

The Australian government will monitor and evaluate the process, ensuring the impact of the increase of kava in Australia. With the rise of kava bars around the world, even in New Zealand with bars such as Four Shells Kava Lounge providing premium quality kava, this creates opportunities for both Australian & Fijian businesses to expand and explore this ever-growing market.

This follows phase 1 of the pilot program which allows incoming passengers to bring in 4kgs (up from 2kgs) for personal use. With international borders being closed for much of the past 18 months, the commencement of phase 2 allowing the commercial importation is of significant cultural importance for Pacific diaspora communities.

Australian businesses are able to apply for a license to import kava, and Fijian kava suppliers are able to get up to code and go through the biosecurity and food standard requirements needed. Requirements by both kava exporters and importers, can be found here.

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