28 Apr 2009

Fiji Retailers say people stock up before import price hike bites

11:39 am on 28 April 2009

The President of the Fiji Retailers Association, Himmat Lodhia, says business is still positive in Fiji, as people stock up before prices of basic goods increase.

In a bid to stimulate the economy, the Reserve Bank last week devalued the Fiji dollar by 20 percent, which will affect all of Fiji's imports.

Himmat Lodhia says Fiji has largely escaped the effects of the worldwide recession.

"But we probably have a crisis in the sense that right now we have devaluation which is going to make the take-home pay less, and now hearing what the Reserve Bank governor is saying that he is going to ask the unions not to ask for more wages. These are things that are probably trying to make the cake smaller."

Himmat Lodhia says employers will also be hit later in the year, as the minimum wage is to increase from $2.15 an hour to $2.50 in July.