9 Aug 2005

Fiji bans Vanuatu kava in retaliation

8:35 am on 9 August 2005

The Fiji government is to place a ban on the import of Vanuatu kava.

Radio Legend says the action is in retaliation for Vanuatu's decision to lift its third ban on Fiji-made biscuits but impose severe restrictions which make it impossible to export Fiji biscuits to the country economically.

Fiji's minister for foreign affairs and external trade, Kaliopate Tavola, says retaliation is the only option left to the government now.

Mr Tavola says the order to ban Vanuatu kava will be issued once the legal processes are completed and the papers signed by the minister for finance.

Exports of Fiji biscuits to Vanuatu were worth about US$1.5m a year but Vanuatu kava exports to Fiji are worth over US$3.6m.