AIFFP funds feasibility study for Lautoka foreshore

Dec 3, 2023 | Blog, News

Australia and Fiji have united in a collaborative effort to shape the future trajectory of the Lautoka foreshore, with the Australian Government channeling A$380,000 through the Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific (AIFFP) to fund a comprehensive feasibility study. This critical study, signed into effect on November 22, is a joint initiative with Fiji Ports Corporation Limited, aimed at informing the redevelopment of the Lautoka foreshore situated within the Port boundary.

The grant agreement, sealed between Varija Piyasena, CEO of Fiji Ports Corporation Limited, and His Excellency Ewen McDonald, the Australian High Commissioner to Fiji and Special Envoy for Pacific and Regional Affairs, signifies a milestone in the longstanding partnership between the two nations. This strategic investment marks the first foray of the AIFFP into maritime infrastructure within Fiji and represents the fourth project funded under the initiative.

The feasibility study, set to project requirements up to 2050, will encompass a meticulous assessment of current conditions, operations, and facilities. In light of the escalating cargo and passenger volumes traversing Fiji’s shores, the study assumes a pivotal role in anticipating and managing future capacity constraints. The envisioned redevelopment plan aligns with Fiji’s broader economic vision, providing essential support for sustained growth and the creation of employment opportunities.

Vajira Piyasena, the CEO of Fiji Ports, expressed gratitude for Australia’s support, emphasising the integral role that ports play in fuelling Fiji’s economic and infrastructure growth. Recognising the increasing demands on Fiji’s ports, Piyasena underscored the importance of the redevelopment plan as a strategic measure to address potential capacity constraints and support economic expansion.

Australian High Commissioner Ewen McDonald reiterated the significance of the Lautoka foreshore redevelopment plan, highlighting the broader impact it would have on Fiji’s economic landscape. The recently inked agreement empowers Fiji Ports to strategically plan for the future, envisioning positive outcomes such as job creation and economic upswing, particularly benefiting the Western Division of Fiji.

This collaborative effort underscores Australia’s commitment to enabling Fiji’s vision for the Lautoka foreshore and fostering sustained economic growth. Other AIFFP’s projects in Fiji include upgrades to Fiji’s international and outer island airportsimprovements to roads and bridges; and efforts to reduce flood risk.