PT&I co-hosts Tonga investment workshop

28/07/2014

The Auckland and Beijing offices of <b>Pacific Islands Trade and Investment (PT&amp;I)</b> collaborated with the Government of the Kingdom of Tonga to host The Road to Investment Workshop last week.<!--more-->

The first of its kind investment-profiling workshop was aimed at educating participants on how to better package and promote the investment opportunities in Tonga to potential foreign investors.

More than 60 participants from the private and public enterprises attended the workshop. A majority of the participants were investors primarily in the manufacturing, agricultural, fisheries and the tourism sectors.

Key areas covered during the workshop included the leading practices and requirements for internal investment policies and frameworks, the types of due diligence for an investment proposition including strategic, financial, risk and legal factors from an investor’s perspective.

Issues raised at the workshops included the failure for investment to remain sustainable particularly in the fisheries and agricultural sectors where overfishing and exploiting natural resources occur. The tourism sector was also brought up as one of the leading sectors for Tonga’s economy.

Participants also raised the importance of being able to develop sound and strategic business plans and proposals to assist them with presenting a firm business case when seeking for a foreign investment to partner up with their businesses or for financial assistance from the banks.

The team of six was lead by the Acting Trade Commissioner and Head of Investments for <b>PIT&amp;I</b> Auckland, Manuel Valdez and Louisa Sifakula, Deputy Trade Commissioner for <b>PT&amp;I</b> China in Beijing. They conducted site visits to a number of local businesses in order to better understand the business environment in Tonga and how the team could better assist to develop sound investment proposals for local businesses in Tonga.

Mr. Valdez also announced during the workshop an investment grant assistance to be offered by the <b>PT&amp;I</b> Offices to Tonga, to assist the local businesses particularly in the areas of developing a sound business plan and investment proposals. “<b>PT&amp;I</b> is providing this assistance to the businesses in Tonga who are in need of technical assistance and external expertise to assist with developing of their business plan and proposals when presenting their cases to the banks, investors and donor partners,” Mr Valdez said.

“The Road to Investment Workshop is an eye opener for both government and private sectors in Tonga on the need for more efforts from both sides to attract more investors and foreign direct investment into Tonga,” Vaimoana Taukolo, the CEO for Ministry of Commerce, Tourism and Labour said.