22 Jun 2010

Saving pensions, Fiji Momi Bay decree unsettles some investors

3:11 pm on 22 June 2010

Fiji's interim Attorney General, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, says the issuing of a decree over the Momi Bay development was to help the pension fund recover its investment.

Building of the planned 127.5 million US dollars development ground to a halt when the developer, Matapo - owned by failed New Zealand finance company, Bridgecorp - could no longer pay its bills.

The pension fund, the National Provident Fund, had also invested 40 million US dollars.

Mr Sayed Khaiyum said the on going legal battles with Matapo were holding up the chances of further development or sale of the property.

A financial advisor in New Zealand, Murray Weatherston, says the issuing of such decrees makes real the risk of investing overseas:

"Fiji is a good case in point where over the last ten of fiteen years there have been several coups and all other sortsof things have happened and I think if you are a New Zealand investor there you can't assume everything will pan out exactly as you think it might have panned out if you had been in your home country."

The Bridgecorp receivers, Price Waterhouse Coopers, say they are seeking legal advice over the decree and that it is more bad news for Bridegecrop investors.