Chapter

2 Fiji

Author(s):
Douglas Scott, and Christopher Browne
Published Date:
June 1989
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Fiji covers a land area of 18,000 square kilometers in the South Pacific, midway between Hawaii and Australia. The country is made up of about 400 islands, of which the two largest comprise 90 percent of the total area and population. Owing to its volcanic origin, about four fifths of the land is mountainous and unsuitable for cultivation, but contains forests, mineral resources, and hydroelectric potential. Agricultural land is fertile with plentiful rainfall, although it is subject to drought and cyclones.

Fiji’s population is about 700,000 and its growth rate averaged about 2 percent annually during the 1970s and 1980s. The population density of 26 persons per square kilometer is considerably below the regional average. Life expectancy is about 65 years and most health and education indicators are favorable by regional standards. The University of the South Pacific is located in the capital, Suva. Fijian society is unique in terms of its racial characteristics. The native Melanesians, who comprise 45 percent of the population, are engaged mainly in subsistence agriculture and public sector employment. The people of Indian descent, who comprise 50 percent of the total, are engaged in sugar cultivation and trading activities. The remaining population is composed of Chinese, Europeans, and other Pacific islanders.

Indian immigration started soon after the United Kingdom began to administer the islands in 1874, mainly as indentured labor for the sugar industry. On completion of their contracts, many of these people settled permanently and became independent small-scale sugar producers. Since most agricultural land is communally owned and may not be sold except to other Melanesians, these farmers rely on lease arrangements. Fiji became independent from the United Kingdom in 1970, with a parliament elected every four years. Until 1987, a political party dominated by native Fijians won all general elections and a party dominated by people of Indian descent constituted the opposition. In the April 1987 general election, an Indian-dominated party defeated the ruling Fijian party. During the remainder of 1987, there were two military coups d’etat. While control has been handed back to a civilian government, the political outlook is unclear.

Fiji is the most advanced economy in the region, with annual per capita GDP of SDR 1,200. Its prosperity is based on an efficient sugar industry, a profitable tourist sector, and a broadly based services sector. With good transport and communication links, the country serves as a regional center in a variety of fields. Economic and social infrastructure are well developed, following a large public investment program undertaken during the 1970s. There are many entrepreneurs who are experienced in small business operations. Shortages of skilled labor are less pronounced than in other Pacific island countries. Although industrial growth is constrained by an inefficient system of protection, production should benefit from the greater flexibility in wage and exchange rate policies that has been introduced recently. However, the pace of development is likely to remain constrained until stable political conditions are re-established.

Economic Structure

Production and Prices

The production and processing of sugarcane contributes about 15 percent of GDP. Sugar production of about 500,000 metric tons per year, with normal weather, is virtually all exported, both on long-term contracts to the European Community at relatively stable prices and on the volatile free world market. Cultivation is undertaken by about 22,000 smallholders. The harvesting, transportation, milling, and marketing of sugar is arranged by the Fiji Sugar Corporation, which is predominantly government owned. Under the present formula, the sales proceeds are divided between the growers and the Corporation on an approximate basis of 70:30.

A wide variety of other agricultural production accounts for about 10 percent of GDP. Copra is the second largest crop. Although its importance has declined over the years with the aging of trees, it remains the major source of cash income in the outer islands. The Copra Price Stabilization Scheme, established in 1975, has helped to stem the long-term fall in output by ensuring more stable prices to growers. Rice, an important crop for domestic consumption, is grown mostly as a second crop to sugarcane. Although priority is attached to increasing production in order to create rural employment opportunities, half of the domestic rice requirement continues to be met from imports. Among the smaller crops, ginger, cocoa, citrus fruits, and vegetables have growth potential and are contributing increasingly to export earnings. Nonagricultural primary production, which contributes another 10 percent of GDP, has been growing as a result of the commercialization of fishing activities, the exploitation of pine forests, and investment in gold mining and mineral prospecting.

The manufacturing sector contributes 10 percent of GDP. Excluding the processing of sugarcane, which continues to represent half of total value added, the focus traditionally was on import substitution, with considerable investment by foreign companies. In addition to the small domestic market and relatively high wages, trade barriers inhibited the development of an efficient industrial sector. The deficiencies in the system of incentives included a pronounced bias against export industries, a level of effective protection that in some cases resulted in low or negative value added, and a wide dispersion in tariffs that interfered with efficient resource allocation. More recently, the focus has shifted toward export-oriented production, assisted since 1981 by the commitment of Australia and New Zealand to provide long-term favorable access to their markets.

The services sector, which contributes half of GDP, is dominated by tourism, trading, government administration, finance, and insurance. The tourist sector alone contributes 15 percent of GDP, far greater than in any other country of the region, with 250,000 visitors in 1986 mainly from Australia, Japan, New Zealand, and North America.

Wage developments have traditionally reflected a tendency to compensate non-sugarcane cultivators to the full extent of any increases in consumer prices, which, in turn, are influenced strongly by import prices. Compensation for cane growers has been determined through the formula for sharing sales proceeds with the Sugar Corporation. During 1970-76, when wages were determined primarily by collective bargaining, compensation for price changes set a floor on wage settlements. Between 1977 and 1984, the Tripartite Forum—under the chairmanship of the Prime Minister with representatives of the Government, the trade unions, and the Employers’ Association—established annual wage guidelines, which were closely based on the rate of consumer price increase in the previous year. Although adherence to the guidelines was voluntary, they were usually applied throughout the public sector and to most private sector employees in manufacturing, construction, and finance. However, wages were substantially reduced in real terms through a freeze in 1985, small nominal rises in 1986, and large nominal cuts in 1987.

Balance of Payments

The foreign trade account normally records a large deficit. Domestic exports are equivalent to 20 percent of GDP. Sugar accounts for two thirds of the total and the other main traditional exports are coconut oil and gold. In view of the varied markets for these products, the destination of exports is broadly based. Owing to Fiji’s central location among the Pacific island countries and its access to air and sea transport, entrepot trade is also an important source of foreign exchange. Imports are equivalent to 35 percent of GDP, comprising a large variety of raw materials and intermediate and final goods. Apart from consumer demand, a major determinant of imports is the capital projects of the Government and the public enterprises. Most of Fiji’s imports originate from Australia and New Zealand, but Japan and other Asian countries have also become important suppliers in recent years.

The net surplus on services averages 10 percent of GDP. Tourism is the largest source of receipts, followed by shipping and insurance services. Private transfers show a net outflow, mainly because of the flow of payments from citizens of Indian origin. Official transfers are equivalent to only 3 percent of GDP, much smaller than in other Pacific economies, mainly reflecting the higher level of income in Fiji. The external current account (including grants) usually shows a small deficit. Private and official capital inflows are somewhat larger in relation to GDP than in most other countries of the region, including official concessional assistance from multilateral financial institutions, commercial borrowing for public investment projects, and limited foreign direct investment.

Policies relating to international reserves, external debt management, and the exchange rate have tended to be cautious. Official reserves are normally maintained at the equivalent of at least four months of imports. Outstanding external debt was reduced in terms of U.S. dollars in 1987. However, with lower GDP and exports, external debt rose to 40 percent of GDP and debt service reached 18 percent of current receipts. In 1971, Fiji introduced a policy of fixing the value of the Fiji dollar to a weighted basket of the currencies of five major trading partners. Between 1975 and 1984, the wage determination process served to make the active use of exchange rate policy largely ineffective. During this period, the exchange rate was kept broadly unchanged in nominal effective terms. During 1985-86, a modest degree of flexibility was introduced in exchange rate management. In 1987, the exchange rate was depreciated in two large steps by more than 30 percent and exchange controls on capital transactions were put in place.

Public Sector

The public sector consists of the central government, local authorities, and 14 nonfinancial public enterprises. The central government budget, prepared on a calendar year basis, covers current and capital transactions in an integrated and comprehensive framework. The relatively small expenditure of the provincial, town, and rural councils is financed by local property taxes, fees and charges, grants from the central government, and domestic borrowing primarily from the National Provident Fund. The public enterprises are engaged primarily in the production, processing, and marketing of certain primary commodities, including sugar and timber; the supply of housing, electricity, and other utilities; and the provision of transportation services, including domestic and international air and shipping facilities. Several government departments engage in commercial undertakings including the provision of post and telegraph, water and sewerage, and interisland shipping services. The Government is a shareholder in the foreign-controlled fish canning and international telecommunications companies.

Budgetary receipts were equivalent to about 25 percent of GDP during 1980-87, with tax revenue accounting for four fifths of the total. The tax structure places greater reliance on income tax than most countries in the region, while foreign trade taxes have correspondingly less weight. Personal income tax collections, which account for about one third of revenue, increased in relation to GDP over the past decade as most taxpayers moved into higher brackets. Corporate income taxes were less buoyant, reflecting tax incentives to encourage industrial development. Import duties, which represent one fourth of revenue, were adjusted frequently in order to increase their yield. Nontax revenue includes earnings from participation in UN peacekeeping operations in the Middle East. External grants account for only 3 percent of total receipts.

Budgetary expenditure was relatively stable in relation to GDP during 1980–87. Current expenditure gradually rose to 25 percent of GDP, with wage and salary payments accounting for over 40 percent of the total. However, capital expenditure and net lending have fallen considerably since major hydroelectric and other infrastructure projects were completed in the early 1980s. The overall deficit, which averaged about 4 percent of GDP during 1980–87, is financed mainly by borrowing from the National Provident Fund. The public enterprises operate on commercial principles and deficits are generally avoided, except for the airline following an expansion of regional services in the early 1980s and the sugar corporation during periods of unusually low international prices.

Financial Sector

The banking system includes the Reserve Bank of Fiji and six commercial banks, five of which are branches of foreign banks. The Reserve Bank was established in 1984, replacing the Central Monetary Authority of Fiji which, since 1973, had performed most central banking functions. Prior to that, a currency board had issued or redeemed currency automatically against foreign exchange. From its early days, the central monetary institution acted as banker, fiscal agent, and depository for the central government; managed the foreign exchange reserves; introduced reserve requirements and refinancing facilities for commercial banks; set minimum deposit rates and maximum loan rates for the banking system; and supervised the operations of nonbank financial institutions. Commercial bank operations are carried out through a wide network of branches and agencies, making service easily accessible even in remote areas.

The largest nonbank financial institutions are the National Provident Fund and the Fiji Development Bank. The National Provident Fund, to which all public sector and many private sector employers and employees each contribute 7 percent of gross wages and salaries, has large investable surpluses. Under its lending guidelines, at least 50 percent of surpluses are lent to the central government and the Housing Authority, 20 percent to the public enterprises, and 30 percent to the private sector. The Development Bank is the main source of long-term finance to the private sector in agriculture and industry. Its resources comprise equity subscribed by the Government (25 percent) and domestic bonds issues and concessional external loans (75 percent). The surpluses of the insurance companies, which have grown rapidly in recent years, are mainly invested in public sector securities.

Developments in the 1970s

During the 1970s, a satisfactory rate of real GDP growth averaging 4–5 percent annually was maintained, employment opportunities expanded steadily, and financial policies contributed to a stable environment. Major contributors to development were tourism, particularly in the early 1970s when foreign investment was substantial; the sugar industry from the mid-1970s through an expansion of the area under cultivation; and public investment in the late 1970s, mainly in hydroelectric and water services. The central government budget deficit averaged less than 3 percent of GDP, and most public enterprises operated profitably. The credit needs of the private sector were met without excessive monetary expansion. Assisted by the growth in sugar exports, tourist receipts, and concessional assistance, overall balance of payments surpluses were recorded in most years. The external current account deficit averaged below 5 percent of GDP, which was more than matched by private and official capital inflows.

From 1970 to 1973, the increase in real GDP averaged 10 percent annually, led by an unprecedented growth in tourism and the associated boom in the construction sector. The sugar industry also prospered because of the strong rise in export prices. Reflecting the improvement in the terms of trade, national income grew faster than output. With large real wage increases in the public sector, the distribution of income between wages and profits was relatively stable. The underlying budgetary position improved because of buoyant revenue from income and foreign trade taxes, while the pace of credit expansion was moderate. With the strong growth in current receipts, the balance of payments position was comfortable and official reserves remained equivalent to about five months of imports.

In 1974–75, the growth in economic activity was halted by the world recession. However, in contrast to the experience of most other countries in the region at this time, the balance of payments did not deteriorate. While tourist activity slackened because of the downturn in the industrial economies, the boom in world sugar prices associated with supply shortages in major producing countries offset the effect of high petroleum import prices. In 1975, following the first round of oil price increases, the terms of trade was 25 percent above its level at the beginning of the decade, the external current account was almost in balance, and gross official reserves rose to the equivalent of nine months of imports. Nevertheless, with a projected decline in sugar prices when world supply conditions returned to normal, there was concern about the fragility of the external situation. Even though the demand for labor weakened, strong trade unions succeeded in obtaining wage increases that were substantially in excess of the trend in productivity, with adverse consequences for competitiveness.

In order to lay the foundation for a stronger external position over the medium term, the public expenditure program was designed to stimulate the traded goods sector. Efforts were concentrated on the provision of infrastructure for the expansion of the sugar sector, where the response in output was highly favorable. The cultivated area was increased by one third and yields were improved by investment in drainage facilities, greater use of fertilizer and other inputs, and more efficient harvesting techniques during the second half of the decade. Steps to diversify export earnings included the establishment of a publicly owned deep-sea fishing fleet and a tuna canning factory. Major investment projects were commenced to exploit forestry resources for export and hydroelectric resources for import substitution.

Accompanied by strong growth of current expenditure, mainly wage and salary payments, total central government budgetary spending rose from 21 percent of GDP in 1975 to 26 percent in 1979. However, to minimize the impact of higher spending on domestic prices and the balance of payments, the coverage and rates of other tax and nontax revenue items were frequently raised. Budgetary receipts increased from 20 percent of GDP in 1975 to 23 percent in 1979. The overall budgetary deficit was held to an average of 4 percent of GDP during the latter half of the 1970s. Most of the deficit financing was obtained from the National Provident Fund. Public enterprise and private sector credit demand was strong. The central monetary authority introduced a series of instruments to influence bank liquidity, including specified minimum ratios of cash and holdings of government securities to deposit liabilities. While credit growth remained rapid, the effect on prices appeared to be limited.

Wage policy was broadly consistent with the preservation of internal and external balance. The guidelines issued by the Tripartite Forum resulted in more modest wage increases than the earlier system of collective bargaining. The growth of nominal wages was kept closely in line with the rate of consumer price increase of the previous year. Since the inflation rate was gradually decelerating, employees secured persistent real wage and salary increases. With the expansion of sugar output contributing to fast growth in national income, profits also increased steadily. Industrial relations were harmonious; inflationary expectations were reduced; and incentives for private investment were preserved.

Despite the growth in export volumes and higher tourism receipts, the external current account deficit widened from 1 percent of GDP in 1975 to 7 percent in 1979. This principally reflected the higher imports associated with the public investment program for which capital inflows were secured mainly in the form of external concessional assistance. Although official reserves were gradually drawn down, they still exceeded the equivalent of four months’ imports. Outstanding external debt remained relatively stable at 18 percent of GDP during 1975–79 and the debt service ratio declined to only 5 percent of current receipts.

Developments in the 1980s

Fiji was initially protected from the full impact of the second round of oil price increases by a dramatic rise in sugar prices triggered by a temporary shortage of world supplies. However, disquieting economic trends began to emerge in 1981-82. Sluggish growth in real GDP and a 30 percent decline in the terms of trade caused national income to fall considerably. Although demand management policies gradually became more restrictive, the overall external adjustment effort was slow to adapt to the fall in the terms of trade and real incomes. In particular, real wage increases in the public sector contributed to a weakening of the fiscal accounts, excessive credit growth, and pressure on the balance of payments. During 1985–86, more decisive action, including financial restraint, a reduction in public sector real wages, and exchange rate flexibility, enabled considerable progress to be made in correcting domestic and external imbalances. Real GDP growth averaged only 1–2 percent annually during 1980–86, well below that in the previous decade. Conditions favorable to the resumption of faster medium-term growth were re-established by the beginning of 1987. Following the change in the political situation during the year, real GDP fell sharply and severe adjustment measures had to be implemented.

Unfavorable Trends During 1980–82

In 1980–82, as the pace of private sector economic activity slackened, with real GDP growth averaging only 1 percent annually, financial policies became more expansionary. Government expenditure increased to more than 30 percent of GDP, mainly because of the rapidly rising wage and salary bill and the large public investment program. Coupled with sluggish revenue performance, the budget deficit widened to 6 percent of GDP. The financial position of the public enterprise sector weakened; lower world prices reduced the profits of the Sugar Corporation; and rising fuel costs contributed to losses in fishing and airline operations. The public sector made greater use of bank credit and, although increases in real interest rates helped to limit private sector demand, the rate of growth of domestic credit was high. However, with less imported inflation, the rate of price increase abated.

An exceptionally large balance of payments surplus was recorded in 1980, because of high export earnings and strong capital inflows associated with public investment projects. However, the overall balance of payments moved into substantial deficit in 1981–82, when the terms of trade deteriorated because of lower export prices. While the net surplus on services and transfers remained largely unchanged, the external current account deficit rose to an unsustainable level that averaged 10 percent of GDP. Although part of the increase reflected unusually high imports of capital equipment, the demand for consumer goods rose strongly because of wage increases. Substantial external commercial borrowing was undertaken and outstanding debt increased to 32 percent of GDP in 1982.

Beginnings of Recovery in 1983–84

During the period 1983–84, trends in the real sector and the balance of payments remained disappointing. Real GDP fell by 4 percent in 1983, when cyclones and drought compounded the problems of weak world demand for sugar and a fall in tourism. With the recovery of activity in these sectors, real GDP rose by 8 percent in 1984, but real national income was little changed because of the further deterioration in the terms of trade. The narrowing of the external current account deficit was related mainly to large inflows of insurance receipts and emergency grants following the cyclones. Imports were reduced because of the completion of major public investment projects. However, this resulted in smaller external concessional assistance and further commercial borrowing was required to rebuild official reserves.

Much of the reduction in the central government budget deficit to 3 percent of GDP in 1984 reflected the cutbacks in capital spending. While the high buoyancy of the tax system enabled budgetary receipts to reach 26 percent of GDP, current spending also rose further in relation to GDP, led by wages and salaries. In order to prevent a resurgence of imports, monetary policy was tightened in late 1984, mainly through higher reserve requirements. Nominal interest rates on bank deposits and loans remained virtually unchanged, so that rates became progressively higher in real terms which helped to stimulate private savings and reduce credit demand.

The growth in wages remained an area of concern because the procedures for centralized wage fixing did not take account of the impact of adverse external factors on the economy’s capacity to pay. The most important determinant of the annual guidelines remained the rate of consumer price increase, which ensured that wage earners received full compensation for higher import prices. No provision existed in the arrangements to moderate the wage increases to reflect the deterioration in the terms of trade and declining prosperity in the export sector. Moreover, the guidelines did not take into account the adverse impact of exogenous factors, including cyclones and drought, that also reduced export income. The real effective exchange rate index was kept broadly unchanged in this period by making small, discrete adjustments against the basket of currencies. If wages had moved in line with real national income adjusted for the terms of trade during 1981–84, they would have been about 15 percent lower at the end of 1984.

Progress in Adjustment in 1985–86

A consensus emerged in late 1984 among economic policymakers that, in addition to continued financial restraint, structural measures were needed to reduce cost-price distortions and encourage private savings and investment in order to promote external equilibrium. As a first step toward correcting the problem, an economy-wide wage freeze was put into effect through the end of 1985. In 1986, the method of setting wage guidelines was changed to take into account recent changes in productivity and the terms of trade, in addition to the past year’s inflation rate. The result was a relatively restrictive recommendation for wage increases. With these changes, more flexible exchange rate management became practical and the effective exchange rate was gradually depreciated by about 15 percent during 1985–86. The combination of these policies reversed the sharp growth in real wages that had occurred in 1981–84.

Real GDP was again affected by adverse weather in 1985, which reduced sugar output and tourist arrivals, but the economy rebounded strongly in 1986. More buoyant economic conditions and higher public capital spending contributed to the recovery in gross investment to 21 percent of GDP, the highest ratio since 1983, although still well below that of 1980–82. The recovery was accompanied by a further deceleration in the rate of consumer price increase. With a pronounced improvement in the terms of trade, mainly because of the drop in petroleum import prices, the external current account registered a surplus. Gross official reserves increased to the equivalent of six months’ imports.

In these circumstances, the authorities decided that fiscal and monetary policies could be eased. Direct tax concessions were implemented that reduced the budget receipts to 24 percent of GDP. Notwithstanding a marked decline of current expenditure to less than 23 percent of GDP, mainly because of reduced wage and salary payments, the budget deficit widened to nearly 5 percent of GDP in 1986. The financial position of the public enterprises improved, particularly that of the domestic airline, following the introduction of a management contract with a foreign airline, and that of the Sugar Corporation in view of stronger world market conditions. With adequate official reserves and private savings at a historically high rate in relation to GDP, bank lending rates were lowered to stimulate private investment, but most rates remained positive in real terms.

Renewed Need for Adjustment in 1987

The buoyant economic conditions were abruptly changed by the military coup d’etat in May 1987, which led to a sharp deterioration in business and consumer confidence, a precipitous fall in tourist arrivals, and pronounced rises in the emigration of skilled labor and capital outflows. The subsequent gradual return to normalcy was interrupted by a second military takeover in September 1987. The renewed uncertainty about economic prospects was compounded by severe drought, which considerably reduced the projected size of the sugar crop. In light of these developments, the policy stance was shifted from one of supporting continued growth to one of protecting foreign exchange reserves.

Fiscal measures were aimed at containing the increase in the budget deficit in 1987, stemming from weak revenue, especially lower customs duty and company tax collection, and higher military expenditure. Discretionary spending was cut deeply, including wage and salary reductions of 15 percent in the civil service and 25 percent in the military. Undisbursed grants and transfers to public enterprises were curtailed and lower priority investment projects were deferred. Despite these measures, the budget deficit rose to 6 percent of GDP, requiring a sharp increase in bank financing, partly because of the cessation of some external concessionary assistance.

To contain the expansion of private credit, the monetary authorities relied mainly on market mechanisms. The interest rate ceilings on bank lending were abolished; the lending rate to commercial banks was raised; and the penalties for using central bank credit were stiffened. With the change in the external situation, banks’ excess reserves plunged and interest rates increased. However, private sector credit demand remained strong as import payments were brought forward, export credit facilities from foreign banks were withdrawn, and branches of foreign companies attempted to repatriate dividends and retained earnings and repay loans. Direct credit controls were introduced as a precautionary measure, but for the most part were nonbinding.

While the main defense against foreign exchange outflows was the tightening of credit policies, additional measures were needed. The Fiji dollar was devalued by 18 percent in June 1987 and by a further 15 percent in October, which proved effective in discouraging outflows through both current and capital transactions. The inflationary consequences appeared manageable; although the price level jumped with higher import prices, weak domestic demand and the real wage cuts limited the secondary impact. Foreign exchange controls were also tightened on emigration transfers, dividend remittances, overseas travel allowances, gifts, overseas investments by residents, and prepayment of foreign borrowings. These restrictions, which represented a departure from Fiji’s past practice of maintaining a high degree of freedom for capital flows, were seen as a short-term expedient.

Table 1.Fiji: Gross Domestic Product by Sectoral Origin, 1975–87(In millions of Fiji dollars at 1977 prices)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Agriculture, forestry, and fishing126131141128163153172176144181156186174
Sugar49536256816881834883598667
Other7778797282859193969898100107
Mining and quarrying1111111111111
Manufacturing59646977888089867791799585
Sugar20222425312631321832223327
Other39424552575458545959576258
Electricity and water5566677778899
Building and construction49474947516054535140414735
Distribution (including tourism)108108105109125117125113122122124134117
Transport and communication53545549676770777887909088
Finance and insurance747577798384869194969810096
Community and other services118118118135126129127128131138139131126
Less: bank service charges-18-18-16-18-19-19-20-20-21-23-23-24-22
GDP at factor cost575585605613691679711712684741707769709
Memorandum item:
Change in real GDP (in percent)1.83.51.312.7-1.74.70.1-3.98.3-4.78.6-7.8
Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.
Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.
Table 2.Fiji: Gross Domestic Product by Expenditure, 1975–87(In millions of Fiji dollars at current prices)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Consumption4505195785736647448618889301,0391,0891,1331,183
Private sector382434481458520587688684748794842873923
Government688597115144157173204232245247260260
Investment116134150160234294376296224250227291177
Private sector59626786111135146113112124147162137
Public sector14557676486112142149127927611262
Change in stocks21215161037478834-1534417-22
External balance3-3-30-21-31-46-49-150-71-62-14-53255
Exports242235289300386470458481498546584609640
Imports245265310331432519608552560560589577585
GDP at market prices5636237077028529891,0871,1131,1421,2751,3111,4561,415
(In percent of GDP)
Memorandum items:
Investment20.621.521.222.827.529.734.626.619.619.617.320.012.5
Domestic savings20.116.718.218.422.124.820.820.214.218.516.922.216.4
Foreign savings40.54.83.04.45.45.013.86.45.41.10.4-2.2-3.9
Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.

Includes public enterprises.

Includes statistical discrepancy.

Goods and nonfactor services.

Equivalent to the external balance on goods and nonfactor services.

Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.

Includes public enterprises.

Includes statistical discrepancy.

Goods and nonfactor services.

Equivalent to the external balance on goods and nonfactor services.

Table 3.Fiji: Output of Main Commodities, 1975–87(In thousands of metric tons)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Sugarcane2,1262,2842,7002,8004,1003,4003,9314,0752,2034,2693,0434,1092,960
Sugar273296362347473396470486276480341502400
Copra22.027.030.926.121.822.820.521.624.025.021.025.013.0
Rice18.016.018.016.118.717.817.020.316.221.528.025.023.5
Cocoa0.20.10.20.10.20.20.30.30.4
Ginger1.81.52.74.53.83.34.95.05.1
Beef2.02.12.32.73.63.53.43.43.53.43.43.63.8
Fish14.89.712.114.614.313.213.913.112.210.913.9
Gold (in thousands of fine ounces)69664928302531463948609185
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.

Does not include subsistence catch.

Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.

Does not include subsistence catch.

Table 4.Fiji: Consumer Price Index, 1975–87(Annual average percentage change)
Weights1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Food33.312.43.27.25.66.715.312.89.35.94.68.3-1.86.1
Beverages and tobacco6.415.210.512.98.910.88.216.07.0
Housing18.611.917.88.27.17.74.411.75.713.04.41.24.41.7
Heating and lighting4.97.18.19.241.218.84.80.71.00.7-9.23.7
Durable household goods7.614.04.63.15.42.50.13.09.8
Clothing and footwear6.36.37.85.316.310.53.92.82.8-0.41.43.1
Transport11.37.54.514.020.610.06.36.87.44.62.76.6
Services6.76.112.15.04.57.31.81.46.4
Miscellaneous4.32.63.510.715.77.37.36.27.22.76.612.5
Overall index100.013.111.27.36.18.314.511.27.06.85.34.41.85.7
(End-of-period percentage change)
Memorandum item:
Overall index100.013.27.87.85.010.515.09.76.36.04.62.93.09.5
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Table 5.Fiji: Central Government Budget, 1975–87(In millions of Fiji dollars)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Revenue and grants112121134157194222263265298335346346342
Tax revenue88104114133157180214210237273279276267
Nontax revenue22161820313441455152576064
External grants2124688101010101011
Expenditure1117147169188218250307339342377383415416
Current expenditure87108119140165185212248286324326331355
Capital expenditure30395048536595915653578461
Overall balance-5-26-35-31-24-28-44-74-44-42-36-69-74
Financing (net)5263531242844744442366974
External81019-2824191955-15
Domestic-316163316425553937366989
Banking system-672214-8-11913-652955
Other991412121226362643314034
(In percent of GDP)
Memorandum items:
Revenue and grants19.919.419.022.422.822.424.223.826.126.326.423.824.2
Tax revenue15.616.716.118.918.418.219.718.920.821.321.319.018.8
Expenditure120.823.623.926.825.625.328.230.529.929.629.128.529.4
Current expenditure15.517.316.820.019.418.719.522.325.025.424.922.725.1
Capital expenditure5.36.37.16.86.26.68.78.24.94.24.25.84.3
Overall balance-0.9-4.2-5.0-4.4-2.8-2.8-4.0-6.6-3.9-3.3-2.7-4.7-5.2
Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.

Includes net lending.

Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.

Includes net lending.

Table 6.Fiji: Central Government Revenue, 1975–87(In millions of Fiji dollars)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Tax revenue88104114133157180214210237273279376267
Income and profits4555637784104113120129147141136129
Goods and services11131314172023273136414445
International transactions32363843535373597385929189
Other taxes-1335445554
Nontax revenue22161820313441455152576064
UN peacekeeping681312131313
Reserve Bank profits91186666
Other2626303384145
Total110120132153188214255255288325336336331
(In percent of total revenue)
Memorandum items:
Tax revenue80.086.786.486.983.584.183.982.482.384.083.082.180.7
Income and profits40.945.847.750.344.748.644.347.144.845.242.040.539.0
Goods and services10.010.89.89.29.09.39.010.610.811.112.213.113.6
International transactions29.130.028.828.128.224.828.623.125.326.227.427.126.9
Nontax revenue20.013.313.613.116.515.916.117.617.716.017.017.919.3
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Table 7.Fiji: Central Government Expenditure by Economic Classification, 1975–87(In millions of Fiji dollars)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Current expenditure87108119140165185212248286324326331355
Wages and salaries384859677787116134159178169178188
National Provident Fund1223456778888
Goods and services27332935445236394146584955
Interest payments67911131419263237414553
Subsidies and transfers15182024272735424755505151
Capital expenditure and net lending30395048536595915653578461
Total117147169188218250307339342377383415416
(In percent of total expenditure and net lending)
Memorandum items:
Current expenditure74.473.570.474.575.774.069.173.283.785.985.179.885.3
Wages and salaries32.532.734.935.635.334.837.839.546.547.244.142.945.2
Interest payments5.14.85.35.96.05.66.27.79.49.810.710.812.7
Other36.836.130.233.034.433.625.126.027.828.930.326.027.4
Capital expenditure and net lending25.626.529.625.524.326.030.926.816.414.114.920.214.7
Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.
Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.
Table 8.Fiji: Monetary Survey, 1975–87(In millions of Fiji dollars; end of period)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Net foreign assets122101112105109134120106108118131190195
Monetary authority125108119103109131117110107115130187183
Commercial banks-8-10-91-113-43211
Government5321121111
Domestic credit83131141172224232279334381412438471541
Government (net)-515724302220393329284782
Official entities10141521262126497358605666
Private sector78102119127168189233246275325350368393
Broad money195201236255306343365395444490502587608
Money supply868987103117105126130142142146179173
Currency27313439454449535961626365
Demand deposits5958536472617777838184116108
Quasi-money109112149152189238239265302348356408435
Other items (net)103117212723354545406775128
(Annual percentage change)
Memorandum items:
Domestic credit57.87.622.030.23.620.319.714.18.16.37.514.9
Public sector-35.4480.0-24.1104.524.4-23.27.091.320.5-17.91.117.043.7
Private sector3.630.816.76.732.312.523.35.611.818.27.75.16.8
Broad money26.73.117.48.120.012.16.48.212.410.42.416.93.6
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Table 9.Fiji: Interest Rate Structure, 1975–87(In percent per annum; end of period)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Reserve Bank
Minimum lending rate6.05.55.56.56.57.59.59.510.511.011.08.011.0
Commercial bank deposit rates
Savings deposits4.04.04.04.54.54.56.06.06.06.06.06.06.0
Regulated time deposits
1–3 months4.454.24.54.54.56.06.06.06.06.06.06.0
3–6 months5.04.54.55.05.05.56.56.56.56.56.56.56.5
6–12 months6.05.55.55.75.76.27.27.27.27.27.27.27.2
1–2 years6.76.76.76.56.57.08.08.08.08.08.08.08.0
2–3 years6.57.07.07.27.28.09.09.09.09.09.09.09.0
3 years or longer8.510.010.010.010.010.010.010.0
Unregulated time deposits
1–3 months11.33.411.1
3–6 months11.04.718.4
6–12 months12.15.418.4
1–2 years12.57.116.2
Commercial bank lending rates
Maximum10.010.010.010.510.512.013.513.513.513.513.513.524.5
Average (estimates)8.78.79.09.29.59.711.912.812.712.913.012.013.7
Public sector securities
Treasury bills (90-day)4.54.34.35.35.35.66.46.16.67.27.76.311.2
3–year bonds6.36.26.27.07.07.69.09.09.09.78.19.0
5–year bonds6.36.66.57.47.48.59.49.49.411.410.49.79.7
10–year bonds6.96.96.77.97.99.110.49.49.411.511.010.49.6
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Table 10.Fiji: Balance of Payments, 1975–87(In millions of SDRs)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Trade balance-48.1-75.4-79.1-90.6-127.7-107.4-223.5-168.9-190.8-156.0-172.4-102.9-9.3
Exports, f.o.b.142.2119.9140.9141.2187.8262.0239.4230.8204.1225.6203.8211.7234.2
Domestic exports115.988.8119.8120.0156.5221.5192.4177.8165.1179.0164.6182.2211.2
Re-exports26.331.121.121.231.340.547.053.039.046.639.229.523.0
Imports, f.o.b.190.3195.3220.0231.8315.5369.4462.9399.7394.9381.6376.2314.7243.5
Retained imports1164.0164.2198.9210.6284.2328.9415.9346.7355.9335.0337.0285.2220.5
Re-exports26.331.121.121.231.340.547.053.039.046.639.229.523.0
Services, net43.932.459.063.662.262.365.370.7108.7117.7137.8100.821.4
Receipts105.159.1147.8169.3203.9242.0262.5276.2290.6311.0264.3186.9
Payments72.778.984.2107.1141.6176.7191.8167.5172.9173.0163.1165.5
Private transfers, net-4.1-1.3-3.4-3.2-6.6-3.5-7.5-2.7-1.7-3.9-10.3-5.0-14.8
Official transfers3.72.92.51.615.023.419.319.525.018.132.512.68.0
Current account-4.6-41.3-20.0-28.6-57.1-25.2-146.4-81.4-57.8-24.1-12.46.25.3
Nonmonetary capital, net20.711.124.67.135.168.1116.469.075.431.07.018.6-36.7
Official8.110.717.2-2.317.154.462.936.438.211.0-8.0-19.6
Private12.60.47.49.418.013.753.532.637.220.07.426.6-17.1
Errors and omissions19.57.010.315.120.9-13.512.5-3.6-19.77.011.0-23.1
Allocation of SDRs1.91.91.9
Overall balance35.6-23.313.9-6.40.831.3-15.6-16.0-3.16.52.035.2-54.7
Memorandum items:
Current account
(in percent of GDP)-0.8-6.8-3.0-4.3-7.2-2.7-13.6-7.5-5.5-2.1-1.10.60.6
Fiji dollars per SDR
(period average)1.001.041.071.061.081.061.011.031.091.111.171.331.58
Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.

Excludes fuel sold to foreign aircraft and ships.

Sources: Data provided by the Fiji authorities; and Fund staff estimates.

Excludes fuel sold to foreign aircraft and ships.

Table 11.Fiji: Exports by Commodity 1975–87(Value in millions of SDRs, volume in thousands of metric tons, unit value in SDRs per metric ton)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Sugar
Value94.765.187.478.6108.3163.7130.8121.6103.099.395.5100.7117.8
Volume254246324.1287.0428.0442.0407.5410.0342.6380.0410.4324.1429.6
Unit value372.8264.6269.7273.9253.0370.4321.0296.6300.6261.3232.8310.6274.1
Molasses
Value1.20.91.84.36.911.39.55.02.96.15.65.96.7
Volume69.070.990.4121.3123.0161.0141.0156.892.9155.1140.0125.6126.6
Unit value17.412.719.935.456.170.267.431.931.239.339.747.452.9
Coconut oil
Value5.14.48.38.410.86.16.46.09.816.76.53.21.9
Volume15.814.417.518.015.013.014.014.914.815.510.615.46.6
Unit value322.8305.6474.3466.7720.0469.2457.1402.7662.21,077.4612.7205.4287.3
Gold1
Value8.66.66.14.76.011.711.815.215.618.518.629.132.0
Volume68.866.048.825.929.025.028.145.839.851.393.184.085.7
Unit value125.0100.0125.0181.5206.9468.0419.9331.9392.0360.6200.1346.0573.2
Fish products2
Value7.113.211.914.319.79.814.314.011.713.715.9
Forest products3
Value1.01.60.71.42.54.83.74.04.07.16.25.910.4
Other (value)5.310.28.49.410.19.610.516.215.517.320.523.726.7
Domestic exports115.988.8119.8120.0156.5221.5192.4177.8165.1179.0164.6182.2211.2
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.

In thousands of fine ounces and SDRs per ounce.

Domestic exports plus imported fish processed at the cannery.

Comprises logs, sawn timber, veneer, and plywood.

Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.

In thousands of fine ounces and SDRs per ounce.

Domestic exports plus imported fish processed at the cannery.

Comprises logs, sawn timber, veneer, and plywood.

Table 12.Fiji: Imports by Commodity Group, 1975–87(In millions of SDRs)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Food, beverages, and tobacco39.943.554.560.161.664.681.272.775.270.772.161.157.5
Raw materials1.81.72.22.43.83.14.33.64.83.22.82.22.0
Mineral fuels37.135.750.644.667.199.4137.6133.1105.796.698.561.849.4
Oils and fats3.43.23.94.44.84.85.85.16.38.59.04.44.9
Chemicals16.013.718.921.025.528.737.134.035.940.033.231.128.9
Manufactured goods38.139.947.754.369.680.488.476.784.282.186.180.056.8
Machinery and transport equipment43.046.248.155.181.897.6117.279.785.678.178.387.556.2
Other33.938.536.641.149.752.665.157.456.460.354.045.941.4
Total imports213.2222.4262.5283.0363.9431.2536.7462.3454.1439.5434.0374.0297.1
Less: re-exports26.331.137.241.942.571.474.984.161.974.369.053.037.3
Retained imports186.9191.3225.3241.1321.4359.8461.8378.3392.2365.2365.0321.0259.8
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.
Table 13.Fiji: External Debt and Debt Service, 1975–871(In millions of SDRs)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
External debt (end of period)101.6104.6124.4116.7140.1185.3252.1345.5384.7385.8372.2334.4272.1
Bilateral15.328.037.028.038.148.778.690.791.382.771.062.054.0
Multilateral24.027.129.634.239.451.872.895.6127.6131.8130.0136.0115.5
Commercial62.349.551.448.056.184.8100.7145.7152.3157.8158.0130.099.5
Use of IMF credit6.56.56.513.513.513.513.26.43.1
Debt service20.223.618.518.116.032.735.555.750.557.073.073.077.5
Amortization12.715.110.710.89.418.815.225.922.829.045.045.053.1
Interest7.58.57.87.36.613.920.329.827.728.028.028.024.1
External debt (in percent of GDP)18.017.418.817.617.819.923.331.936.933.934.932.239.3
Debt service (in percent of exports of goods and services)10.314.68.56.84.97.78.212.711.511.114.315.318.4
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.

Includes private sector debt; disbursed debt only.

Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.

Includes private sector debt; disbursed debt only.

Table 14.Fiji: International Reserves, 1975–87(In millions of SDRs)
1975197619771978197919801981198219831984198519861987
Official assets126.9100.3121.1103.4103.8131.5118.0118.0111.9116.0119.0139.683.2
Reserve Bank126.998.6118.8102.6102.9129.4117.7117.7111.3116.0118.8139.583.2
Government1.72.30.80.92.10.30.30.60.20.1
Official liabilities16.56.56.512.913.513.112.95.94.6
Net official reserves126.9100.3114.696.997.3131.5118.0105.198.4102.9106.1133.678.7
Commercial banks-10.5-14.9-9.11.2-0.61.42.9-3.30.22.40.61.5
Assets5.44.33.93.92.86.58.64.57.58.640.591.514.7
Liabilities15.919.213.02.73.45.15.77.87.36.239.990.014.7
Net total reserves116.485.4105.598.196.7132.9120.9101.898.6105.3106.7135.078.7
Memorandum items:
Official assets (in months of imports)29.37.37.35.94.44.83.44.13.84.24.25.94.5
Fiji dollars per SDR (end of period)1.011.091.061.071.111.011.021.051.101.121.231.402.04
Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.

Drawings under the International Monetary Fund’s compensatory financing facility.

Retained imports only.

Source: Data provided by the Fiji authorities.

Drawings under the International Monetary Fund’s compensatory financing facility.

Retained imports only.

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