11 Mar 2011

Academic calls for more prescriptive ADB advice

2:29 pm on 11 March 2011

A leading academic says the latest report by the Asian Development Bank needs to be more direct in its advice to governments.

The head of Development Studies at the University of the South Pacific, Professor Vijay Naidu, says the ADB report contains important economic data but it needs to spell out more clearly what governments should do.

He says on Fiji the report says continued weak economic performance indicates a need for structural reforms to encourage greater private sector development and investment.

But Professor Naidu says this is too vague.

"There needs to be more emphatic advice given by ADB through its Pacific Economic Monitor to island country policy makers so that you know clear steps can be taken. In the case of Fiji I think that there's a need to stop pussyfooting and to say things more firmly."

He says the level of private investment in Fiji has gone down because of political uncertainty.