Friday, June 14, 2024
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$447m for Vanua Levu tourism development

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Tourism Viliame Gavoka says the World Bank has approved financing of $447 million for a ten-year multiphase programmatic approach to tourism development in Vanua Levu including Taveuni.

In his ministerial statement today, Gavoka said this is on highly concessional terms through the International Development Association.

Gavoka said the crux of this program is to mobilize investments in resilient infrastructure and essential services, create a more enabling business environment, and enhance institutional coordination.

He said this would be in three phases.

Phase one is valued at $137.3 million and runs from year one to year six, to set the foundations for sustainable tourism in Vanua Levu.

This phase involves activities like tourism master planning, supporting MSMEs through a pilot program, Waisali Reserve upgrade, improving Savusavu and Labasa Airports, upgrade of the road connecting Labasa and Savusavu, a new landfill for Savusavu, cityscape enhancement, locally managed marine protected areas, Pilot Wastewater Treatment Plant, and the Renewable energy investment.

Phase two is valued at $156 million and will tentatively run for three to eight years – It will put physical and social capital infrastructure in place.

This phase will build on lessons from Phase One and will continue to improve essential services and infrastructure for people and tourism businesses, and further enhance the environmental, social, and cultural sustainability of tourism assets.

Phase three is valued at $152.6 million, and will tentatively run from year six to year 10.

Building on the previous two phases, this final phase will see longer-term outcomes, such as improved infrastructure connectivity, increased tourism revenue and tourism-related jobs, and increased community benefit from integrated tourism development in Vanua Levu.

Ilaitia Ravuwai
Ilaitia Ravuwai
Journalist | news@fijilive.com

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