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Successful sheep farming takes off in the North

Date: 15 Feb, 2016

A foreign investor who has identified the need to meet local meat demand while taking advantage of Fiji’s tax free region in Vanua Levu has successfully established her business in the North.

Ms In Sook Lee, 64 years, a retired school teacher from Korea started Joy Farm (Fiji) Limited with her children – son Dongcheon Choi, 34 years, and daughter Hae Jin Choi, 35 years, concentrating on sheep farming and developing land for farm use.

“We wanted to set up a business in a developing country so that it would be a blessing to the country and at the same time, it would be profitable,” says Dongcheon, who spoke on behalf of his family.

“The lamb and mutton industry in Fiji is currently dominated by overseas brands and the purpose of our business is to try and put a stop to the import of these type of meats. It is for this reason that we do not export as we try to meet the demand of the local market.”

Dongcheon added the business has been in operation for one year from January 2015 so far with 170 sheep, 12 cattle, 50 chickens, 80 ducks, two ponds of tilapia fish, and one swine. Joy Farm (Fiji) Limited also undertakes noni planting.

In terms of setting up business in Fiji, he advised potential foreign investors of two vital traits he considered were important – ‘dedication’ and ‘commitment’.

“Given that we were ready to start the business, what Fiji had to offer especially Northern Fiji, was attractive and we immediately identified the great potential that existed. There was no reason not to choose Fiji,” Dongcheon said.

He commended the instrumental role of Investment Fiji that enabled them to start their sheep farm.

“We are very grateful for the assistance by Investment Fiji. They helped us in meeting the requirements, and provided the necessary information, even facilitated meetings with the other approval agencies to help us.”

Investment Fiji Chief Executive Officer, Mr Godo Müller-Teut said it was foreign-owned businesses such as Joy Farm (Fiji) Limited that have successfully taken off the ground that augur well for Fiji.

“There are many benefits that result from foreign-owned businesses like Joy Farm such as job creation for the locals; the local meat industry will have an additional supplier to try and curb the demand; the economy will be strengthened.

“Again, this demonstrates the business-friendly environment is strongly supported by the Fijian Government. When the policies are right, there will be bound to be a strong private sector. And this is what Fiji has and as such, is enjoying the strong economic growth,” the CEO said.