21 Jun 2007

Australia and NZ accused of trying to destroy Fiji economy

2:06 pm on 21 June 2007

Fiji's interim finance minister has accused Australia and New Zealand of collaborating to destroy the country's economy.

Mahendra Chaudhry has told Radio Legend the two countries are trying to block aid assistance and loans from international banks and other countries to Fiji.

Mr Chaudhry says if these moves are successful, they will have serious consequences for Fiji.

He says the interim administration is working on a roadmap towards democracy and he has called on Australia and New Zealand to stop their attempts to block Fiji's progress.

Mr Chaudhry says Australia and New Zealand have been undermining Fiji's economy through unjustified, negative travel advisories.

He says Australia in particular has also tried to undermine assistance for Fiji at the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the Asian Development Bank.

Mr Chaudhry says if these two countries want the democratic process in Fiji to proceed expeditiously, they should stop this and cooperate.