2nd July 2011, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: His Excellency Suliasi Lutubula Fiji's High Commissioner to Malaysia has on Friday,24th June 2011 successfully launched a Fiji - Malaysia Business Council at a dinner at his residence in Kuala Lumpur.
The mission staff together with some members [students, rugby boys and High Commission families] of the Fijian community present in KL Malaysia prepared the dinner. The Fijian boys performed the formal traditional welcoming ceremony with the presentation of sevusevu which was for the first time drank and experienced by most if not all guests and the formality was concluded with the vote of thanks and prayer delivered by Mr. Samuwai, the husband of the First Secretary.
Distinguished and respected businessmen from prominent companies participated in the pre-dinner discussion showing their sincerity towards this initiative. In attendance were Sir Mogan Lourdenadin from MBF Berhad and Carpenter Group of Companies and Dato' Dr. Sharifuddin from Top Symphony Sdn Bhd together with Company Executive Officers from Glenreagh Sdn Bhd, Sweitenia Industry, G. Pereira & Associates, Northport Malaysia Berhad and Global Supermasters Group.
Of the eighteen guests present, fifteen (15) were businessmen from seven (7) major companies in Malaysia. Three of these companies are currently operating in Fiji and others would be in the near future.
The High Commissioner His Excellency Suliasi Lutubula in his opening speech welcomed everyone to the event, on behalf of the government and people of the Republic of Fiji and after introducing the dinner motive, he further informed that this event would be history in the making for Fiji, once unanimous agreement was achieved for the establishment. The formation of the Malaysia/Fiji Business Council would be a milestone achievement for Fiji and the dinner was used as the first step towards this endeavor.
He also informed that Fiji Mission was quite thankful for the receptiveness of the companies on the invitation as shown in accepting the invitation to be present at the dinner. Further the meeting was informed of the Government of Fiji's interest in the reality of the formation of the Business Council, hence strengthening partnership in bilateral trade and investment.
The Back to Batu Bahat project was also raised by HE, highlighting participation and sacrifice of the Fijian soldiers in the 1950's to protect the Malaysian community and he said this is the opportune time for the Malaysian companies to reciprocate by investing in Fiji and joining the Business Council.He then opened the discussion for the guests to share their experiences on doing business in Fiji.
All the guests present shared the following experiences whilst doing business or already engaged in the discussion on doing business in Fiji:
Mr. Gerald John, the Barrister proposed Sir Mogan Lourdenadin to be the Chairman for the Malaysia/Fiji Business Council which was unanimously agreed and Dato' Dr. Sharifuddin to be the Vice-Chairman also was fully endorsed by all present, hence the formation of Malaysia/Fiji's Business Council.
In respect of the Fiji Mission this was a very important achievement in such occasion which concluded very successfully. The Mission further anticipated that the membership of the Malaysia/Fiji Business Council will be increased in a Luncheon Talk where Fiji Mission together with Investment Fiji Board Chairman have been invited by the Malaysian Exporters Association [MEXPA] for presentation on 'Doing Business in Fiji'.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation P. O. Box 2220 Government Buildings Suva, Fiji