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This blog is brought to you by Gilbert & Samuels Company Limited, a financial advisory services and consulting company based in Suva, Fiji.
To contact the authors of this blog, please call telephones (679) 3342719, (679) 3544897 or e-mail info@gilbert.com.fj.


Monday, January 23, 2006

Investment - its meaning and current forms of investment in Fiji

"To invest" in the primary sense is to put one's money into something that will generate returns or profit to the person making the investment. These returns are either in the form of dividends or interest, or in the form of an increase in value of your investment over time.

In Fiji, there are currently various of investment that one can get into. One basic type is your deposit with a bank. When you place your deposit with a bank, you will earn interest (which is the return that you get) over a certain period of time. Here is a list of some of the forms of investment you can get into in Fiji:
  1. Bank deposits - this is when you place your money in a bank deposit account either in the form of a savings account or a term deposit. These forms of deposits earn interest. The other type of bank deposit, a current or chequeing account, does not usually earn interest, however some banks now offer some of these types of accounts that earn interest for the depositor;
  2. Money markets - these are short term investments over a night or 7 day period in the money markets where banks and other large financial institutions participate.
  3. Capital markets investments - two basic types are to buy shares with companies listed on the South Pacific Stock Exchange or secondly to invest into new start-up companies as a venture capitalist. Most of the companies listed on the stock exchange have done very well over the past few years. Providing venture capital is fairly new in Fiji and needs a bit more analysis of a company by the person wishing to invest. More on this later.
  4. Bonds and other Government or Government-guaranteed Securities - these are usually offered by the Government or a Statutory Authority to fund the budget deficit or for that Statutory Corporation's need to meet its day to day funding requirements. They are usually government guaranteed. Bonds, on the other hand, are a fairly underutilised investment vehicle. More awareness of this type of investment is now being undertaken by the Capital Markets Development Authority.
  5. Property Investment - this occurs when an investor puts his funds to buy a property. Property investments have been doing well in recent years in Fiji with property prices in Suva and Nadi increasing significantly over the past few years. Suva property prices have plateued a bit and would be a good form of investment for prospective property buyers over the next few months, particularly if you wish to buy. Other geographical markets are attractively priced and should be an opportunity to consider. Keep a close watch on this segment.
  6. Unit Trusts - these are basically investments in a unit trust. There are two local trusts including the Unit Trust of Fiji and the Fijian Holdings Unit Trust which are priced in Fiji dollars. Some institutions like banks also offer the opportunity for locals to buy units in an offshore trust. More on this later.

We intend to provide you more information and a summary of important statistics as we progress. In the meantime, if you need any assistance on an investment you wish to buy/get into in Fiji, please e-mail us at gilbert@connect.com.fj. For foreign investors wishing to set up a business in Fiji, we can also offer you our attractively priced services. Our Principal is an Investment Advisor licensed by the Capital Markets Development Authority of Fiji.

For travel, accommodation and what to do/see/enjoy in Suva, please check out our other blog, http://promotingsuva.blogspot.com/

This blog looks at promoting investment in Fiji, particularly by Fiji residents working abroad. It also aims at assisting former residents and foreign investors find their way around and help with their application to set up a business or to simply invest in Fiji.

The blog will be built up slowly with information on the benefits of investment for the novice investor and the regulations that are in places to deal with investment by foreign investors.

In the meantime, if you have any specific need, please e-mail your request to gilbert@connect.com.fj.