Evolving opportunities, expanding further
Evolving opportunities, expanding further
Investment has always been critical to a country's progress and long-term development. It not only increases economic production but also offers job opportunities and income growth.
Recognizing this, governments around the world have formed investment promotion agencies (IPA’s) to raise awareness of existing and upcoming investment possibilities, attract investors who can help create jobs and increase productivity, and make their formation and expansion in the economy easier.
To adapt to changing industry developments, sector trends, and investment policy reforms, Investment Fiji will transition into an Investment Promotion Agency. The new Investment Fiji Bill 2022 provides Investment Fiji the regulatory support to shift its focus from screening and monitoring investment projects to key strategic areas such as attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), investment generation, investor facilitation and aftercare, export promotion, policy advocacy, and linking FDI and Domestic Direct Investment (DDI).
The rationale for investment promotion
As Fiji, along with other countries across the globe, emerges from the pandemic; collaboration and innovation are fundamental to economic recovery.
Numerous studies have shown that dual promoter-regulator roles have been ranked very poorly, while those that were completely promotional were the best-practiced Investment Promotion Agencies. There is a strong positive and statistically significant correlation between the quality of facilitation performed by IPAs and the level of foreign direct investment flows.
According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, “IPA’s are more likely to succeed when they focus strategically on promotion and facilitation."
Under the new Investment Fiji Bill 2022, the screening that is traditionally undertaken by Investment Fiji will now become the responsibility of the Tier 1 Government Agencies, allowing Investment Fiji to devote more time to facilitation and high-quality investment.
Transitioning into an IPA will mean:
- Strong country/brand image for investment.
- Proactive focus on competitive sectors
- A market-leading IPA with strong sector and promotional capabilities.
- Excellent investor facilitation services both to local and foreign investors.
- Attracting the global markets
- Strong collaboration between the government and the private sector, including with government bodies based in other countries.
In order for Investment Fiji to align its operations with the changing legislation, the organization is undertaking a strategic reset through the development of a new strategic plan. The ultimate goal of the new strategic plan is to drive Fiji’s economic recovery, post-COVID by broadening Fiji’s economic base. The new strategic plan that is currently being developed will completely revamp the organization, the way it works, the way its work is monitored, and how it interacts with its stakeholders.
A new vision and mission will be formulated to reflect Investment Fiji’s ambitions as a new Investment and Trade Promotion Agency, which supports the mandate of the agency as defined by the 2021 Investment Fiji bill.
Key stakeholders will continue to play a crucial role in the success of Investment Fiji’s promotion and attraction activities. The new strategy will outline key stakeholder relationships to establish strategic relationships between Investment Fiji and its key partners.
In addition, Investment Fiji will develop a new marketing strategy. These strategies are based on their return on investment for Fiji and Investment Fiji’s marketing budget. Some of the activities identified with the highest return on investment are Direct Outreach, Outbound Missions, Consultant-Lead Generation, and In-Market Presence.
Aftercare is a crucial service provided to existing domestic and foreign investors. It includes a range of activities, from post-establishment facilitation services to developmental support to retain investment, encourage follow-on investment, and achieve greater local economic impact. According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), 70 percent of FDI comes from existing investors. These investments usually occur through expansions of existing facilities or mergers and acquisitions.
Monitoring and evaluation activities are instrumental for Investment Fiji to assess its progress on key performance indicators (KPI) that are vital to the success of an investment and trade promotion agency. As the organization matures, it will measure its progress in line with the nation’s goals, such as the Return on Investment, Gross Value Added, and the Quality of Jobs created.
Acting Chief Executive Officer-Investment Fiji