PM Bainimarama: Fiji will continue to improve digital connectivity in agriculture

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The DigitalFiji App. Picture: JONA KONATACI/FT FILE

Fiji will continue to work on improving digital connectivity in the agricultural sector.

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama said this will be done through universal access to high-speed internet networks and broadband until all areas of Fiji were digitally connected.

In his address at the High-Level Leaders Segment FAO Virtual SIDS Solution Forum yesterday, Mr Bainimarama said they were encouraging competition among broadband internet service providers by making communication infrastructure available to multiple users under reasonable terms and conditions.

He said they were building a nationally connected network of telecentres, and they were making steady gains in digital literacy.

“On that bedrock of connectivity, we’re creating new opportunities in employment for Fijians living in all parts of the country, including in IT support services,” Mr Bainimarama said.

“We will continue to embrace new technology and invest in infrastructure that keeps Fiji on the cutting edge of sustainable development.

“We’re excited about innovation in cloud computing, 3D printing, inter-networking of smart devices and other emerging technologies that hold the potential to improve efficiency and productivity across the Fijian economy.

“For agriculture, the government will further explore mechanised land preparation and harvesting, modern seed-breeding methods, and hydroponic and greenhouse farming techniques to address the issues of poor soil fertility, declining farm productivity and intermittent local supply.

“We are digitising as many government services as possible. E-Government platforms are speeding up approvals processes, business registration, land use administration, taxation, and other services. ICT-based planning, data collection, monitoring and evaluation have been improved in most organsations in the public sector through the use of the Computer Assisted Personal Interview System to enhance processes, productivity and service delivery.”

Mr Bainimarama said the digital revolution had been a godsend to Fiji, as it had for many other nations.

He said digital technology allowed connection for people over huge distances and expanses of ocean in real time.

“It allows us to bring government services right to people’s homes and workplaces, no matter where they are. It gives every Fijian easy access to information available around the world.”

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