Potential for Fiji to receive panama-size ships: Cawaki

January 6, 2024 4:37 pm

The Fiji Maritime Safety Authority’s grand vision is for Fiji to be the only transshipment hub in the region.

CEO Joeli Cawaki says for that, Fiji needs to work on extending its ports to cater for the panamax-size vessel transportation cargo from other continents.

He says that Fiji is yet to grab hold of the potential for Fiji to be the center of the region and is determined to raise the standard of MSAF to be one of the top priorities for the government.

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Cawaki adds that the current issue with maritime is the vessels, seafarers, and the environment.

“We can accommodate the bigger cargo vessels; we called it the panamax size. There are about 50,000 containers in that boat, which means that from the American continent or the Asia Continent, they come to Fiji to unload and for us in Fiji to be able to transship those cargos to Tonga, Samoa, and other Pacific islands.

He says that they will be working closely with Fiji Ports Limited since Fiji currently does not receive direct cargo ships from the US or Asia.

The CEO of Fiji Ports Limited, Vajira Piyasena, says that a lot of groundwork and paper work happened last year for the betterment of the ports with relevant stakeholders.

Fiji’s current two main ports are Suva and Lautoka, where 95% of the nation’s import and export cargo is handled.