10 Dec 2007

Backing for estimate that Fiji's coups have cost billions

7:18 pm on 10 December 2007

Fiji's former opposition leader Mick Beddoes says an economist's assessment of the cost to the economy of four coups is reasonable.

Fiji had coups in 1987, 2000 and 2006.

Dr Wadan Narsey estimates that the economic contractions as a result of the coups cost Fiji more than six billion US dollars.

Mr Beddoes says this amounts to 7 thousand US dollars for each person in Fiji, and far exceeds the average yearly income.

"I have, of course, always wanted to try to quantify it because I think its important for those who consider perpetrating these kinds of events that they need to understand that besides the emotional message or the ideology that they want to promote, the one factor that nobody seems to consider or take light of, is what we lose in the process."

Mick Beddoes says the losses from tourism alone amount to nearly 3 billion US dollars.