GOVERNMENT TO UPGRADE RAILWAY SYSTEMS IN FIJI

In its bid to further assist cane farmers with efficient cane transportations, the Fijian Government is working closely with the Government of India to upgrade our national railway systems.

Prime Minister Hon. Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama, while receiving a courtesy call from the Indian High Commissioner to Fiji Her Excellency, Ms Padmaja this morning, said the proposed project would be a massive development for Fiji.

In the meeting, PM Bainimarama said he had earlier met with India’s Minister for Railways regarding the proposed project.

The project, he said would certainly assist the farmers with transporting their cane to the sugar mills more effectively.

PM Bainimarama while contributing to the recent 2019-2020 National Budget debate in Parliament, said a full report from the Indian Government would outline the blueprint for the massive upgrade of our national railway systems.

He said the new systems would make room for much larger loads of cane on the rail systems, at the same time, reduced cane cartage costs even further.

Government is also providing cane harvesters, tractors and six-wheeler trucks to further assist cane farmers.PM Bainimarama added the Government would continue to prioritise the needs of cane farmers and reaffirmed his support to Fijians who make up the Sugar Industry.

H.E Ms Padmaja said the Indian Government had actively considered the report and was finalising their budget estimates for the proposed project.

The Sugar Industry supports the livelihoods of more than 200,000 Fijians.

Efforts to grow the industry are captured in the National Development Plan and include increasing productive capacity, improving transportation, implementation of a new cane-quality payment system and the generation of additional revenue, among other things.