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SUVA, Fiji Islands (September 21, 2001 – FijiLive)---The Governor of the Reserve Bank of Fiji, Savenaca Narube, today made the following announcement with respect to the possible impact of the U.S. crisis on the Fiji economy.

Mr. Narube said that with events still unfolding as to how the U.S. government will respond to the terrorist attacks, there are numerous scenarios and various possible implications of its effects on Fiji. However, overall, only a marginal impact is expected on Fiji's economy at this stage.

Mr. Narube clarified that the tourism sector will be the most affected driven by an expected fall in U.S. tourists, which may only be partially offset by the redirection of tourists from other destinations. Garment exports to the U.S. are also anticipated to decrease somewhat. There may also be delays in the movements of airfreight between Fiji and the United States.

Mr. Narube, however, added that more favorable domestic conditions in recent months are expected to limit the adverse effects of the above external developments.

On the outlook for inflation, Mr Narube said inflation is likely to be subject to both positive and negative shocks due to weaker global demand and a possible rise in oil prices. Overall, the net effect is likely to be negligible and the year-end inflation forecast for 2001 is expected to remain at around three per cent.

Mr. Narube added that Fiji's foreign reserve levels remain comfortable and the year-end projection is still unchanged at over FJ$ 800 million (US$ 347,440,000).

Fiji's exchange rate is also expected to remain stable.

For additional reports from FijiLive, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Other News Resources/FijiLive.

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