Private investments in Fiji fell 12 percent in 2020 and 7.1 percent in 2021, according to ANZ Research on Fiji for May.
One of the authors of the Research and International Economist, Kishti Sen, says that with Fiji’s vital tourism industry shut down due to closed borders and heightened uncertainty about future demand, it did not make sense for businesses to invest.
Instead, Sen says firms entered a cost-cutting survival mode, deferring all non-essential investment.
However, he adds that they believe the tide is turning.
Sen states residential buildings and offices to cater to the emerging business process outsourcing (BPO) sector, along with hospitals, warehouses, and retail buildings, are set to take off.
Sen further states that mining construction will also add to activity as work on the Lion One Gold Mine in Sabeto ramps up.
Heavy industry construction, especially factories, is expected to do well too.
The Economist adds that while there is typically a two-year lag from building approvals to activity on the ground, Fiji has amassed an impressive project pipeline of three billion dollars across all construction segments, including residential, non-dwelling buildings, and mining.
Sen says there is an urgency to get some of these projects moving towards commencement to diversify Fiji’s economy away from its dependency on tourism.
Hence, he says they expect private investment, which has been bumping around the bottom of the cycle in 2022, to start picking up in the second half of this year.