Energy Insecurity Poses A Threat To Fiji Economy: PM

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Bainimarama calls for shift to sustainable energy

By Mereani Gonedua

SUVA, Fiji (Fijilive, April 3, 2013) – Energy insecurity is a threat to Fiji’s economy, says Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama.

Speaking during the opening of the National Energy Forum in Suva today, Bainimarama said energy insecurity does not exist in isolation and it is not a sector problem however it threatens the fabric of society and to the very sovereignty as an independent nation.

"Therefore Fiji’s shift to a sustainable energy supply is critical," said Bainimarama.

He said government has come up with many initiatives in order to continue the growth of renewable energy however urgency is needed.

"We are very close to our goal of providing universal access to electricity in Fiji and this is being achieved mostly using renewable sources," he said.

"We need a focused attention to bring under one umbrella some of the perhaps disjointed efforts. We need to consolidate, adopt new technologies, have guided research programs, adopt new processes, spread our risk factor and have a successful public private partnership."

He also said with the input of all stakeholders at the two-day forum it must result in policy that ensures a future built on secure, affordable, clean and sustainable energy sources.

Meanwhile in his presentation governor Reserve Bank Barry Whiteside said the energy sector is essential for growth in the economy as it has important direct and indirect impacts on all economic sectors.

Whiteside said the energy sector has significant implications for domestic price stability and external stability.

Whiteside also said there is a critical need for a Policy framework for the sector with effective implementation and on-going monitoring.

The forum will end tomorrow.

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