The ocean state of Fiji places great value in the sustainable management of its ocean and marine resources. Along with its neighbors in the Oceania region, it believes in gaining substantial financial and economic returns from a blue economy, only if the ocean is sustainably managed.
The concept of ‘blue economy’ picks up from the ‘green economy’ and translates those principles to the marine environment. One such way of initiating a blue economy transformation for our oceans is through the recently introduced Blue Accelerator Grant Scheme (BAGS). The Blue Accelerator Grant Scheme was conceptualized during the structuring of Fiji’s first ever sovereign blue bond scheduled for issuance in 2023 and 2024 with the aim of creating a pipeline of innovative projects that reflect Fiji’s blue economy ambitions.
With financing from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Blue Accelerator Grant Scheme will be implemented in collaboration with the Drua Incubator Program of the Government of Fiji. The aim is to support statutory organizations, private businesses, cooperatives, civil society organizations, non-government organizations and community based organizations, who have developed promising blue economy projects that are aligned to Fiji’s national development priorities.
At present, there are 8 projects that have been selected through Blue Accelerator Grant Scheme (BAGS) all of which will receive tailored support from the Drua Incubator, UNDP’s Inclusive Growth team, the Accelerator Lab in the Pacific, and key partners from the private sector. The 8 projects are:
a) Towards a New Sustainable Marine-Based Industry for Fiji and the Pacific: Island Suitable Boatbuilding Training
b) Navakavu Ecotourism Park and Mangroves
c) Leaf Capital Public Trading Enterprise Fiji: Green Mobility Project
d) SeaPac Limited: Pioneering Sustainable Prawn and Fish Tank Farming in Fiji
e) Sustainable Sea Transport Initiative: A Sustainable Sailing Cargo Proa for Fiji and the Pacific
f) J Hunter Pearls Fiji: Savusavu Community Edible Pearl Oyster Farms
g) Willis Towers Watson: Innovative Risk Financing to support Reef Ecosystem Conservation and Protection in Fiji
h) Talanoa Treks and the Uto ni Yalo Trust: Creating Fiji’s Ocean Trail
More information on the projects can be found here.