Minister for Economy, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum says Fiji’s counter fiscal response to the pandemic is being supported by international financial institutions.
In Parliament, Sayed-Khaiyum revealed Fiji’s loan from the World Bank is for a 40-year term, 10-years grace period with a zero percent interest rate and 0.75 percent service charge.
He says the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, International Monetary Fund, Japan International Cooperation Agency, and other bilateral partners all supported Fiji’s response to the crisis.
“They knew this was the appropriate response, that’s why they have lent to us and most of these debts are concessional debt.”
The Minister says JICA is lending to Fiji at a 0.01 per cent interest rate and the ADB has just approved Fiji to be eligible for its concessional resources.
Sayed-Khaiyum says Fiji is being helped because it highlighted its vulnerability to issues including climate change.
“When the honourable Prime Minister goes and participate in an international forum, these are the things we talk about, because of these, because of the discourse, because of highlighting our vulnerability we are now getting concession financing from ADB, we got a financial concession from the World Bank.”
He says Fiji has borrowed over $700m in concessional loan adding it is not right to compare this debt to that borrowed at the market rate.
Sayed-Khaiyum says if the government was mismanaging the economy these partners would not lend to Fiji.
He says Australia and New Zealand are good examples as they are providing direct budget support, which he adds is unheard of in Fiji’s history.