‘PROTECT PRIVATE SECTOR’

Fuo’o called on the Government of National Unity and Transformation (GNUT) to protect private sector

BY INDY MAEALASIA

MEMBER of Parliament (MP) for Central Kwara’ae Constituency,Ricky Fuo’o, has called on the Government of National Unity and Transformation (GNUT) to protect the country’s private sector.

During a parliamentary session last Thursday, Fuo’o highlighted the vital role played by the private sector.

“We hear that the private sector is the engine for economic growth; however, we have done very little to protect our private sector. Our private sector is a key source of revenue.” Fuo’o said.

Fuo’o proposed that the government prioritize local content policies (LCPs), which are government-imposed measures aimed at promoting the use of domestically produced services and resources.

 While acknowledging the success of the Sol2023 Pacific Games and former PM Manasseh Sogavare’s leadership, Fuo’o noted that it had little impact on the economy, attributing this to the absence of LCPs. 

“I believe there was not a lot of local content involved in all the infrastructure that has been built for the game,” he remarked.

“If local content policies were in place before the games, I believe we would have more ripple effects on our rural communities and our economy,” Fuo’o said.

Highlighting the current struggles many local businesses are facing to stay competitive, he emphasized the need for a “level playing field.”

“There has to be some sort of protection for our private sector; otherwise, they would be taken over and all services and goods would be supplied by foreigners,” he said.

Fuo’o  proposed initiatives such as reserving job opportunities for locals as well as setting thresholds where certain projects are exclusively allocated to local businesses.

“Our private sector and local businesses are here to stay; they have everything to lose in this country. They are not going to back up today and leave for another country,” he added.

Fuo’o told Prime Minister Jermiah Manele that, despite being on the opposite side of the house, he expressed willingness to work alongside his government. 

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