Items disbursed to 416 micro-entrepreneurs

A micro-business entrepreneur receives her sewing machine from Courts. Picture: SUPPLIED

A total of $206,000 worth of items have been distributed to more than 416 micro, small and medium enterprises all over Fiji so far under the Trade Enhancement Programme.

The Trade Enhancement Programme was launched in April 2022 as grant funding assistance of maximum of $500 to micro entrepreneurs.

According to the Ministry of Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport, 1000 applications were approved at a value of $492,795.

Minister for Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport, Faiyaz Koya said the idea behind the TEP was to create employment opportunities for those who had lost their jobs because of COVID-19.

He said it was meant to encourage the movement from informal to formal sector, create the opportunity for training/awareness on financial literacy, encourage youth, women and persons with disability entrepreneurship, enhance provision of services from the skill based or “blue collar”.

“The micro business segment has been hard hit during the COVID 19 pandemic, the Ministry of Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport as the business engine of the government through its various grant programs has provided the much needed relief and assistance.

“I am happy to say that approximately 69 per cent of the recipients under TEP are women. It is very encouraging to witness our Fijian women utilising their particular technical skill set and developing it into an enterprise.”

Mr Koya said the micro entrepreneurs had been very grateful for the $500 grant assistance.

He said it may seem like a small amount to many however they do not realise the impact it makes to a micro business such as a tailor, contractor, artist, designer or even a market vendor.

“With the additional capital items sourced through the assistance this will enable our micro entrepreneurs to increase their outputs and sustain themselves,” he said.

He reminded the approved applicants to await the call from the ministry on when to pick up their approved items from their selected vendors.

More Stories