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South Pacific Private Sector Aid

MEDIA STATEMENT
HON SIMON UPTON

8 October 1999


SOUTH PACIFIC PRIVATE SECTOR AID

Seventeen training and business development grants to support private sector development in the Pacific Islands were announced today by Associate Foreign Affairs Minister, Simon Upton.

The grants, totalling NZ$442,000 come from the Pacific Islands Investment & Development Scheme (PIIDS), part of New Zealand's Official Development Assistance (NZODA) programme. They cover private sector activities in seven countries.

"The latest PIIDS grants cover a wide range of projects, including training in small business management, tourism development, agricultural and floricultural technical exchange, fisheries and sea safety training, plus assistance to ventures including the establishment of a printing business and the selling and distribution of propane gas for household consumption," Mr Upton said.

"PIIDS is a development programme which relies on private sector initiatives. It is an innovative, forward-looking use of our ODA funding, and provides an opportunity for the New Zealand private sector to be involved in assisting our South Pacific neighbours to meet their own developmental needs."

Mr Upton said 27 proposals had been submitted for the July bidding round. Grants were allocated according to each proposal's development merit, commercial viability and the likely long-term economic and employment benefits for the recipient country. Proposals were assessed by a panel including development specialists, and New Zealand private sector representation.

Proposals for the next round of PIIDS grants should be sent to the Development Cooperation Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade by 29 October 1999.

RELEASE ENDS

List of grant recipients and background note attached.


PIIDS Development: Advisory Mission

1 Fiji: Pacific Quality Products: ISO Assistance to the Engineering Industry

The New Zealand based firm, Pacific Quality Products Ltd, will travel to Fiji to advise on setting up and documenting procedures for up to three engineering firms in readiness for ISO 9002 Quality Management System Implementation and Audit.

Pacific Quality Products have been delivering assistance in this field for over ten years and have to date assisted approximately 60 companies with certification to ISO standards (five of which are in Fiji).

2 Fiji: Hort + Research: Value added products for Tropical (Ethnic) Fruit

The Horticulture and Food Research Institute of New Zealand (Hort+Research) will provide technical advice to National Exports (Fiji) Ltd that will enable them to export partially processed ethnic fruits (including jackfruit, breadfruit, bitter gourd and ivi). Hort+Research will import into Auckland a range of the fruit in question from Fiji, which will be used to carry out appropriate processing trials to determine the optimal conditions of partial processing and packaging needed to meet the client and market requirements

A senior scientist from Hort+Research will then travel to Fiji to demonstrate the optimised processing technology.

3 Vanuatu: Concord Pacific Ltd: Assist in Setting up a Tourist Company

Concord Pacific Ltd a Wellington based firm who have operated in Vanuatu previously, will assist Rason Vanua (a new Vanuatu tourism company) in the setting up phase of a new tourism business. The assistance will include the development of the business plan, marketing plan and staff development.

4 Tonga: Tourism Resource Consultants: Nature & Adventure Tourism Product
Development & Marketing

Tourism Resource Consultants (TRC) in cooperation with the Tongan Visitors Bureau, the Tongan Visitors Bureau in Vava'u and the Vava'u Tourist Association will offer training and advice on product development and marketing
in response to requests from individual nature and adventure tourism operators in Vava'u, Tongatapu and 'Eua.

5 Tonga: Dennis N Fenwick: Practice Development - 'Uta'atu & Associates

Dennis Fenwick, chartered accountant and Michael Burlace, Technical Manager at Elite Computers will work together to install a new computer hardware and software package at the practice of 'Uta'atu & Associates (accountants) in Tonga with the aim of developing efficiencies within the existing practice. Dennis Fenwick has had similar experience having recently completed a systems upgrade at his own practice and having recently been retained by the NZ Foundation for the Blind to conduct a review of their accounting systems.

By way of background, 'Uta'atu & Associates are a well established business in the Kingdom of Tonga. The business was developed eight years ago and is now regarded by many as the leading firm of its type in the Kingdom providing sound financial management and accounting services. The firm at present operates using old information technology systems set up when the firm was first established.

6 Vanuatu: Tourism Resource Consultants: Nature & Adventure Tourism Product
Development & Marketing

Tourism Resource Consultants will provide practical, meaningful advice and skills transfer to nature, adventure and cultural tour operators in Vanuatu. The proposal has been prepared in association with the Vanuatu Tour Operators Association.

PIIDS Development: Training Programme

1 Fiji: NZ Institute of Highway Technology: Safe Handling of Bituminous
Materials

The NZ Institute of Highway Technology has been requested by Technic Bitumen Pacific (in Fiji) to organise and present courses on the "Safe Handling of Bituminous Materials". The training will focus on safety in the use of and handling of hot bitumen.

2 Papua New Guinea: Ian Lister & Associates Ltd: Business Skills for Evaluating
New Investments

Ian Lister has been requested by the Fisheries Association (PNG) to provide training. The programme aims to develop the skills of investment bankers in evaluating business opportunities with the objective of developing the skills of participants in evaluating business development opportunities particularly in fishing vessels and/or processing facilities in the PNG fishing industry.

3 Papua New Guinea: Powerflow Ltd: Sustainable Use of Renewable Energy
Water Pumping Technology

Powerflow Ltd is a New Zealand company specialising in the development of energy technologies. Powerflow seek support to fund a demonstration and training programme for the sustainable use of Renewable Energy Water Pumping Technology.

The goal of the project is to better equip the private sector of PNG to introduce the benefits and knowledge of appropriate renewable energy water pumping technologies to the rural communities.

4 Federated States of Micronesia: Metier Consultants: Accounting for Small
Business Seminar

Metier Consultants (Auckland), who have previously worked with PIIDS in the Pacific region, will research, write and present a seminar in Kolonia, Pohnpei entitled Accounting for Small Business for the Federated States of Micronesia Development Bank (FSMDB). The aim will be to enhance the ability of the bank's clients (small business personnel) to; prepare cash receipts and cash payment journals, prepare balance day adjustments and final accounts, prepare payroll and stock control systems, understand commercial mathematics and prepare budgets from annual accounts. The programme will be coordinated in Pohnpei by the FSMDB.


5 Samoa: Pacific Islands Development (John Stewart): Fish Handling/Sea
Safety/Navigation Course

John Stewart and Roger Dickie in association with the Savaii Fisherman's Association of Samoa will provide training in fish handling hygiene and basic sea safety to fisheries and small boat crew. All training units are based on the Sea Safety Curriculum 1999 and all fishers who successfully complete all units will receive the Sea Safety Certificate.

6 Tonga: Pacific Islands Development (John Stewart): Practical (at sea) bottom
line fishing/on Deck Processing/Sea Safety & Navigation Training

John Stewart and Roger Dickie will at the request of the fishers of Vava'u and Ha'apai and the Ministry of Fisheries in Tonga provide bottom line fishing training to fishers in Ha'apai and Vava'u together with courses in sea safety and navigation.

7 Vanuatu: Pacific Islands Development (John Stewart): Fish Handling &
Hygiene Sanitation/Basic Navigation and Sea Safety

John Stewart and Roger Dickie will provide training in fish handling (HACCP) and basic sea safety to fisheries staff/crew of the Vanuatu company "La Toque A Poisson" (NB the course will also be open to participants other than those employed by La Toque A Poisson).

8 Tonga: Alan J Harre: Quality Management - Melon and Egg Plant for Export
Markets

In association with the Quarantine & Quality Management division of the Ministry of Agriculture & Forestry in Tonga, Alan Harre will set in place improved quality management processes for on farm grading and post harvest handling of eggplant and melon for export markets. This will be largely done with the aid of photographic posters & charts. The prime focus of Harre's work will be to maximise the output of the Heat Treatment (HTFA) plant in Nuku'alofa. The HTFA plant was funded under the New Zealand/Tonga bilateral programme.


PIIDS Development: Personnel Attachment

1 Fiji: Hort + Research: Floriculture

The Horticulture and Food Research Institute of New Zealand (Hort+Research) will coordinate a training attachment for Ms Sally Fong a member of the Association of Cutflower and Ornamental Growers of Fiji. As part of the training Ms Fong will travel to New Zealand for a total of twelve days spending time attached to a number of flower growing companies. In addition Ms Fong will spend three days at a nursery in Queensland, Australia, specialising in the growing of tropical flowers.

PIIDS Investment: Equity Grant

1 Cook Islands: Equity Access Pacific (EAP): Travis Moore on behalf of Taua
Benioni & Varapana Charlie: LPG/Industrial Gas Supply

Varapana Charlie (Rarotonga) and Taua Benioni (New Zealand) will form a joint venture company (Ocean Gas) supplying and selling gas to industrial and domestic users in the Cook Islands. While the venture will initially import propane gas in consumer size cylinders it is planned to begin bulk purchasing in
in the future. The venture has already successfully commenced limited commercial operations in the Cook Islands and has recently secured a licence for a second outlet on Rarotonga. The Equity Grant will be applied as a contribution toward capital equipment for the venture.

2 Fiji: Mayfair Enterprises Ltd: Advertising & Blank Till (Cash Register) Roll
Production

Mayfair Enterprises Ltd (New Zealand) and Pramod Kumar (Fiji) will form a joint venture company in Fiji printing/manufacturing and supplying coupon advertising and blank till rolls to businesses throughout Fiji (there exists the possibility that the venture may eventually expand its sales to other Pacific rim countries).

Mayfair Enterprises Ltd has successfully operated over the past 10 years till roll advertising i.e. advertising on one side of all receipt rolls used by supermarkets. Mayfair recently sold its New Zealand marketing arm and sees Fiji as the obvious choice to continue its operation in the Pacific. Pramod Kumar now wishes to purchase the surplus equipment so as to operate the venture in Fiji.

The Equity Grant will be applied as a contribution toward the capital purchase of plant & machinery that produce advertising on cash register till rolls.


Background Note: The Pacific Islands Investment & Development Scheme (PIIDS)


The scheme has developed from a combination of the old Pacific Islands Industrial Development Scheme, and the South Pacific Development Assistance Facility (SPDAF). It is funded as part of the New Zealand Official Development Assistance (NZODA) programme.


Basic Objectives Of PIIDS

 To encourage private sector development in Pacific Island Countries in partnership with the New Zealand private sector.

 To encourage the development of employment and economic growth in the South Pacific based on Pacific Island economies' comparative advantages.

 To encourage New Zealand private sector investment in the Pacific Islands.

 To facilitate the transfer of knowledge from New Zealand to the South Pacific through the provision of training, marketing, technical, and managerial support.

How the Scheme Works

The scheme aims to meet the needs of the private sector directly. PIIDS has been designed to be flexible with a range of funding options available including training, feasibility, and equity assistance.

There are six separate grants available under the scheme. PIIDS Investment allows for the funding of up to 50% of the cost of a feasibility study to a maximum of $10,000 and may contribute up to $75,000 as an Equity Grant to the new venture on a dollar for dollar basis. PIIDS Development can provide grants of up to $25,000 to facilitate Training Needs Analyses, Training Programmes, Advisory Missions, and Personnel Attachments to New Zealand.

PIIDS proposals are assessed by a panel made up of Development Division staff and an independent private sector consultant during three competitive assessment rounds each year. Proposals are assessed on the basis of their developmental merit, and in the case of PIIDS Investment - their commercial viability.

The total 1999/2000 PIIDS allocation is $1.5 million.

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