News Release: FDB: Budget is Courageous, Compassionate and Fit-for-Purpose

FIJI DEVELOPMENT BANK

NEWS RELEASE

FDB: Budget is Courageous, Compassionate and Fit-for Purpose

The Fiji Development Bank (FDB) Chief Executive Officer, Saud Minam, has welcomed the 2021-2022 National Budget, saying it is courageous, echoes compassion, and is fit-for-purpose.

“It is a much-needed boost to support FDB’s own efforts, in fitting in the existing support framework for its customers affected by the pandemic, by providing a platform for businesses to sustain themselves during these trying times.

The $200 million cash injection to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises sector (MSMEs), which could be accessed through FDB, fully subsidized for two years, is an enormous commitment by Government for the resilient recovery of Fijian businesses,” said Minam.

“Under this initiative when businesses take a loan from FDB, ranging between $10,000 and $100,000, they will not be repaying anything to the Bank for two years – it will be an interest-only loan for that period that the Government will pay on behalf of the business,” he explained.

“From the third year, after two full years of cushioned recovery, the businesses can start repaying their loan. Such an initiative is definitely in line with FDB’s own strategy of easing customer’s cash flow burdens to support their business continuity. We have been providing COVID relief and rehabilitation assistance to our customers since March last year in the form of loan moratorium options,” said Minam.

“We have also identified other incentives in the budget that could assist our customers to invest in growth and diversification of their business,” added Minam.

“This budget provides the needful stimulus for a resilient economic recovery by addressing the most wide-ranging socio-economic aspects of Fijian’s livelihood and safety, as well as the financial burdens of businesses that continue to grapple with the impacts of the pandemic. It is a shot in the arm for our MSMEs, an important sector that supports close to 60% of Fijians in job, and our agriculture customers. We at FDB are ready to look after our customers, hold their hand and take them through with this budget support” said FDB Chairman Andre Viljoen.

“The Budget will empower FDB to foster an enabling environment for its existing and new customers. Another good news is for our largest customer-base -agriculture, with the Government increasing its interest-rate subsidy for agriculture loans by FDB from 6% to 8% and increasing the loan limit for the subsidy from $50,000 to $100,000, our customers will pay less,” said Viljoen.

FDB will be delivering services through its digital channels during this pandemic. The team is working on delivering this and we will communicate this soon,” said Minam.

Customers are urged to email us at info@fdb.com.fj  in the meantime, he added.

-Ends-

For media enquiries, please contact:  

Media & Community Relations Officer, Parijata Gurdayal E: Parijata.Gurdayal@fdb.com.fj  M: 9907613