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FIJI with its brand and higher adaptability in the global environment and even if the environment is challenging, adaptability will get it to reasonable place in terms of growth and economic outcomes. more…

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by April 18, 2016 General

FIJI with its brand and higher adaptability in the global environment and even if the environment is challenging, adaptability will get it to reasonable place in terms of growth and economic outcomes.

International Monetary Fund mission chief on the Article IV Consultation to Fiji, Roberto Fernades Guimaraes-Filho says fortunately for Fiji, because it is relatively small and the market it is tapping on is so large, the small hiccup in one of these markets would not have such a big impact on Fiji.

This is provided if policymakers in Fiji do the right thing in terms of polices, marketing the Fiji brand, marketing Fiji as a destination.

Mr Guimaraes-Filho made the comments after questions asked by this newspaper on whether small island states such as Fiji will be affected by the political instability in advanced economy countries and terrorism acts.

“You can think of 9/11 in the US and it takes the economy into the soft patch,” he said.

“This is one of the areas that is not easy to quantify. When you think about political instability, when you think of act of terror, there is a very a strong uncertainty and predictability where it is going to happen, where is the magnitude.

“More importantly, how is it going to hurt business and consumer confidence? I mean to put it more directly, how is it going to affect the psyche of the people?

“You can think of 9/11 in the US and it sort of takes the economy in the soft patch. You can think of an example of where you have had terrorism or conflict that has led to destroy the entire economy and you have situation where you have political tension which hurts investment sentiments which also lead to slow growth.

“For tourists, you have Australia, increasingly China and now India and increasingly connectivity with the rest of the world.

“The Chinese economy is slowing down but you’re looking at the number of tourism arrivals from China, they are growing very rapidly because they are hitting the right market because you have the right brand and the experience you want to go back again.

“India’s economy is growing rapidly and if they going to Singapore they will find out about Fiji.

“Even if you have global growth not meeting expectations, tourism in Fiji is exceeding expectations.

“I think it boils down to whether you have the right policies in place, the right people to implement projects, infrastructures improving and the brand is not only preserved but becomes stronger. I’m talking about the brand as a country when you think about tourism.”

He adds Fiji has taken the right steps and the country is expected to continue to do so to make sure that the challenges are addressed and the country is moving forward in the right direction.

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