‘No halt to kava export’

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Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade, Cooperatives, Small and Medium Enterprises and Communications, Hon. Manoa Kamikamica, speaking to the Fiji Times at his office in Suva, on Wed 17 Jan 2024. Picture: ELIKI NUKUTABU

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade Manoa Kamikamica has refuted claims made by a Radio New Zealand report on February 20 regarding the temporary suspension of kava exports from Fiji.

Mr Kamikamica says these claims, suggesting a halt in kava exports following the discovery of illicit drugs in kava packs, are unfounded and inaccurate.

He said the two issues were separate and attempts to link them were irresponsible.

The acting CEO of the Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji (CAAF) has also confirmed that CAAF has not issued any directive to halt kava exports.

“While we are committed to combatting illicit drugs, this in no way undermines the integrity of our exports, especially kava exports from Fiji, which goes through several layers of checks by the industry and the competent authorities in Fiji,” Mr Kamikamica said in a statement.

“The respective authorities are diligently carrying out their responsibilities to maintain the highest standards of product safety and security.”

He said the ministry remained committed to supporting Fiji’s kava industry and ensuring the continued success of our agricultural exports.

Mr Kamikamica further urged all stakeholders to refrain from spreading misinformation and encouraged the public and stakeholders to only listen to official source of information and contact the ministry if further clarifications were needed.

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