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Fiji

 
 

heading foldHow we are helping

2013/14 Estimated Outcome

$61.9 million

2014/15 Budget Estimate

$61.9 million

 

The Australian Government is committed to normalising relations and building stronger ties with the Fiji Government. Fiji has experienced low and unstable economic growth as a result of political uncertainty following the 2006 coup, low investor confidence, slow progress on structural reforms, and vulnerability to natural disasters.

Fiji’s return to parliamentary democracy will help to strengthen economic growth by providing a more stable and transparent regulatory environment. Australia will continue to provide strong support for Fiji’s democratic institutions, and we will work with the Fiji government to strengthen the public sector and key institutions. Australia will work closely with Fiji’s government to develop stronger relations with Fiji’s public sector. We will continue to work with private sector partners in Fiji to help unlock market opportunities that can facilitate inclusive economic growth, and reach the most disadvantaged communities by partnering with civil society organisations.

A man standing alongside a river
Aquaculture supports coastal livelihoods (credit: DFAT).

In 2014-15, the Australian aid program will focus on Fiji’s vulnerable and most disadvantaged communities. The three major development objectives are: improving access to quality education; strengthening primary health services; and building resilience and economic opportunities in disadvantaged communities. The bilateral program has three cross-cutting priorities to reinforce focus and coherence in delivering the aid program across the three objectives: deeper engagement between Fiji and Australia (including through scholarships), support to civil society and humanitarian assistance.

Australian aid will also support effective governance and enhance Australia’s engagement with Fiji’s public sector through supporting technical exchanges between Australian government institutions and their Fijian counterparts; technical advisers in key ministries; dedicated Australia Awards scholarships and Australian volunteer placements in selected ministries; and policy training opportunities in Australia and the region.

An automotive engineering course at the Australia-Pacific Technical College, Fiji
An automotive engineering course at the Australia-Pacific Technical College (APTC), Fiji (credit: DFAT).

Australia’s aid investments will enhance international competitiveness and trade facilitation through:

  • supporting Fiji to address external constraints to trade, such as quarantine requirements and tax arrangements to catalyse investment in key markets with high growth and trade potential
  • encouraging Fiji’s reengagement with PACER Plus.

Investing in the most disadvantaged groups such as those with disabilities, women and girls, and those living in the poorest regions of Fiji, will remain a focus. Australia will continue to provide timely and effective humanitarian and disaster assistance in Fiji, given its vulnerability to cyclones and floods.

Children sitting around a board game
Australia supports the Pacific Financial Inclusion Programme and Fiji’s Ministry of Education to incorporate financial education into Fiji’s national school curriculum (credit: DFAT).


Archived details of expenditure for this program for 2013–14 can be found here.

Archived details of expenditure for DFAT’s aid program, following the Government’s announcement on 18 January 2014 to revise the aid budget, can be found here.

Education

Results 2012–2013

  • 2,015 people were provided with assistive devices including eye glasses and hearing aids.
  • 1,466 poor or vulnerable children were provided with school grants to enable payment of school fees, or the provision of school meals, uniforms or sandals. 648 classrooms have been upgraded and 8 schools have been upgraded with disability accessibility.
  • 2,098 women survivors of violence were provided with counselling and other services through Pacific Counselling and Social Services and Salvation Army.

Commitments 2013–2014

  • Upgrade water and sanitation facilities and run hygiene promotion programs in schools.
  • Rehabilitate the poorest primary schools by 2018 and provide them with school grants to improve literacy and numeracy including by:
    • increasing access to education for disadvantaged students, including those with a disability
    • investing in school infrastructure to ensure facilities are adequate and safe, and contribute to improved student learning outcomes
    • conducting targeted research and analysis on the systemic challenges to achieving improved education outcomes in Fiji.

Health

Results 2012–2013

  • In a world first, three new vaccines were introduced together: pneumococcal, rotavirus and Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).
  • Approximately 8,000 babies received the first dose of pneumococcal and rotavirus vaccinations.
  • In 2013 8,700 girls were offered the HPV vaccine. Of all schools visited during this reporting period 92 per cent of targeted girls (aged 13 years) have received dose 1 of the HPV vaccine.

Commitments 2013–2014

  • Introduction of a healthy child program by:
    • strengthening infant immunisation and maintaining coverage rates at above 90 per cent
    • improving management of childhood illnesses.
  • Deliver a safe motherhood program by:
    • increasing the number of first trimester check ups
    • upgrading sub-divisional hospitals to encourage a higher proportion of hospital deliveries.
  • Continue to upgrade Fiji’s sub-divisional hospitals and bring them up to ‘mother-friendly’ and ‘child-friendly’ standards.

Economic development

Results 2012–2013

  • 35,315 people were provided with increased access to financial services including financial literacy training, micro-insurance and internet based remittance providers.
  • Fiji was assisted to gain approval to export fresh ginger rhizomes to Australia. Fiji is the first country in the world to export fresh ginger to Australia.

Commitments 2013–2014

  • Assist development of micro-insurance products and help vulnerable communities access banking services. 
  • Continue to help farmers gain access to export markets and help female vendors access municipal markets. 
  • Create new jobs and increase household incomes for poor families.

Governance

Results 2012–2013

  • 91 people were awarded with scholarships enabling short-term in-Australia study, research and professional development activities.
  • 7 civil society organisations were supported to implement a range of health; civic education; human rights violation monitoring and good governance initiatives.

Commitments 2013–2014

  • Support Fiji’s transition to democracy through assistance for a credible electoral process and civic education programs.
  • Support civil society organisations to deliver basic services, improve food security and increase incomes for people in every province of Fiji by 2015–16.

Humanitarian

Results 2012–2013

  • Australia provided $3.1 million to assist Fiji to respond to the impact of Cyclone Evan. Repairs were made to up to 83 schools and hospitals in Labasa and Lautoka.

Commitments 2013–2014

  • Continue to provide timely and effective humanitarian and disaster assistance.

Research overview

Good research can lead to positive change for the world’s poorest by enhancing the design and implementation of development policies and programs. That’s why Australian Aid is committed to an innovative research portfolio and funds research, including through:

  • competitive funding mechanisms (such as the Australian Development Research Awards Scheme)
  • research partnerships with different Australian, international and developing country research institutions
  • commissioning research to address a specific question or clearly defined research gap
  • one-off research grants, when an existing program of research is relevant to the Australian aid program.

For more information on how Australian Aid funds research generally, please refer to the research homepage.

Some of our research specifically targets development challenges in the Pacific and Fiji. Two recent examples are presented below.

A new approach to measuring poverty in the Pacific

Poverty trends, profiles and small area estimation (poverty maps) in Republic of Fiji (2003–2009) is the first report to present district-level estimates of poverty nationally for a country in the Pacific region. It is based on a World Bank poverty mapping method that used the national census and expenditure—instead of reported income—to estimate poverty in each district across Fiji.

The resulting poverty maps clearly show poverty pockets to guide anti-poverty programs so they reach the poor. The report aims to inform national debates, policies and plans for Fiji’s development, including consideration of provincial and district-level needs and priorities. It provides evidence to compare resource allocations with poverty trends, and to inform more efficient and effective policies and programs in areas such as education, remittances, pensions and social assistance. In addition to the detailed poverty maps, the report includes tables and charts that show poverty incidence in Fiji according to different household and individual characteristics, and detailed information on what determines and characterises poverty in Fiji.

Click here [external link] to download a copy of this publication.

Update on progress to end violence against women in Melanesia and Timor-Leste

TheViolence against Women in Melanesia and Timor-Leste: Progress made since the 2008 Office of Development Effectiveness Report takes stock of Australian Aid’s work to end violence against women in Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Vanuatu and Timor-Leste.

The study highlights noteworthy achievements in developing policies and programs with a human rights and gender focus, expanding the evidence base, and increasing donor funding. Involving men, boys and faith-based groups in prevention has been a major step forward.

The Vanuatu Women’s Centre has published a national study on the prevalence of violence against women and a similar study for Fiji is due to be released in 2012.

Significant advances have been made in expanding women’s access to justice through improved legislation, but implementation of the laws through the judiciary and the police remains weak. Support services for survivors of violence in the region still need improvement.

Click here to download a copy of this publication.


Related research

Stop Violence: Responding to violence against women in Melanesia and East Timor

Violence Against Women in Melanesia and East Timor: Building on Global and Regional Promising Approaches

Vanuatu National Survey on Women’s Lives and Relationships, May 2011

Where is Fiji?



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Country statistics

Population: 0.861 million

Gross national income per person: USD $4,624

Percentage population living on less than $2 a day: NA

Net Primary School completion rate: 96.7 %*

Ratio of female to male primary enrolment: 96.7 per 100  (2008)*

Mortality rate of children under 5 (per 1,000): 23.2 per 1,000 live births (2009)*

Maternal mortality (per 100,000): 27.5 per 100,000 live births (2009)*

 

*2011 Pacific Regional MDGs Tracking Report

 
 

heading fold Why we give aid

quote

The people of Australia and Fiji share ties in many aspects of social and economic life. We are working together to improve the wellbeing of the poorest people in Fiji.

Find out more about why we give aid to Fiji

 
 

heading fold How we give aid

Australian aid works through commercial contractors, civil society groups, other aid donors, and Pacific regional development organisations to deliver Australia’s aid to Fiji. We work with the Fiji government to direct our efforts so that they align to Fiji’s development priorites.

Find out more about how we give aid to Fiji

Read Fiji's Country Strategy 2012-2014

Read more about our work in Fiji in 2012-13

Read the Fiji Aid Program Performance Report 2013-14

 
 

heading foldProgress Against MDGs

  • Eradicate extreme hunger & poverty
  • Achieve universal primary education
  • Promote gender equality and empower women
  • Reduce child mortality
  • Improve maternal health
  • Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
  • Ensure environmental sustainability
 
 

Last reviewed: 17 November, 2014