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Regional Development in the Fiji Islands.

- A case study of Lawaki Village, Tailevu North.

Regional Development Seminar for JICA International Students in Japan, 2008.


Koliyavu Ratu Timoci Turagayawa

Photo: Anonymous
 Fiji has more than 330 islands located in the the
South Pacific Ocean: 18,333 km2 land area

 Population of 931 741, population growth rate

of 1.388% (2008)

 35% below national poverty threshold (2004)

 Tropical climate without extremes of cold or hot

 Multiracial country - English is the official


 GDP - $FJD 5,500 per capita (2007) –396

Fig 1. This figure shows the organizational structure of the Regional Development Ministry
in Fiji. Source: Fiji Government Website
Case Study- Small Grants Scheme: Lawaki Village -
Eastern Division.
• Location: 17°38'S, 178°34'E
• 20.71km from nearest town
• Village area 3.8105 km2.

Figure 2. Map locations of the Fiji Islands (right) and the local area (left)
Source: Google Earth, Anonymous.
Population and Age structure in Lawaki
 Total population = 175 ; 40 Families

 More than half of the population are middle aged


 About a third of them are students (7-25yrs)

 Pre-school aged children and older aged people

accounted for the rest of the population (7 %).


Root crops

Subsistence farming and fishing

Fruits and vegetables



Photos: SPRH (USP), Fiji Government Website, JB, Anonymous

Utilization of Resources

Photos: IAS (USP), QVSOB Website, Anonymous

Village Farming Report, 2008
Total Crop Percentage
2% 2
5% 3
2% 4
44% 6
1% 10
4% 11
3% 1% 8% 4% 12

Figure 3.Total crop percentages for the last year. Refer to presentation
summary for individual listings as numbered in this figure. Source:
Lawaki Village Committee Report, 2008.
 Small scale framing subsidies (equipments, animals,
cash incentives).

 Rural housing programs - village school (Japan Aid),

a village dispensary (Nursing Project) and donation of
school boat (for Qoma Island students).

 Village Hall and Drinking water

 Setting up utilities such as drinking water systems,

electricity and upgrading of major roads and village
footpaths (partly funded).

 Scholarships for tertiary studies (regional to national

Major Challenges
 Rising fuel/food prices----- increase in poverty

 Poor Organization structure

 Communal ownership of land

 Lack of technological skills

 Rapid increases in population

Photo : Fiji Government Website

Photo: Anonymous

National Challenges
 Poor governance & corruption

 Rising food / fuel prices

 Food security and poverty

 Poor organization /implementation strategies of development

 Lack of funding and investments in national services sectors

 Lack of technological capacities, knowledge and skills

 Regular changes of government / policies

 Politically volatile status at present

Current Mitigation Tools
 Reforms / Reshuffles / Restructures

 Foreign Investment & Industry promotion

 Human resource development and capacity

building initiatives/projects

 Private-Public partnerships (PPP’s)

 Bilateral & Multilateral initiatives

Government Role
 Main machinery- proposals, policies,
funding, implementers, monitoring.

 Initiator- PPP’s, Regionalism, International


 Fund distributor and follow ups

Private Sector Role
 Main Engine – innovations / facilitators for
economic growth & development

 Exploiting marketing opportunities

 World class standards of services

 Policies and decision makers – state


 Decentralization / Convergence Policies

Thank You
 Government of Fiji
 Government of Japan
 Japan International Cooperation Agency
 Regional Economic Development
Initiatives, Japan
 Lawaki Village Committee, Fiji
 Korovou Initiative, Fiji