The first-ever MSME Conference was launched by the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Trade, Cooperatives, Small & Medium Enterprises and Communications (MTCSME) on Thursday 18 March 2024 at the MTSCME Conference Room. The launch was attended by the Board of Directors of Business Assistance Fiji (BAF), Sponsors, MSME Fiji Staff, and media partners.

The Deputy Prime Minister, Hon. Manoa Kamikamica officiated the unveiling of the MSME conference logo embedded with the theme “Innovation Waves: Sailing MSMEs to Success” and the Go-live Online Registration form.

He commended BAF for organizing the conference; a platform where MSMEs can discuss, share, and network.

The theme, “Innovation Waves: Sailing MSMEs to Success,” emphasizes the importance of innovation amid changing consumer behaviors and market demands. It promotes creative solutions and adaptive strategies for MSME success.

The Conference will be hosted at the Grand Pacific Hotel from 7 – 8 March 2024. BAF had set up a Working Committee in late November 2023 to plan the logistics for the Conference. The Working Committee is represented by the BAF partners, Women in Business (WIB), Fiji Chamber of Commerce & Industry (FCCI), Fiji Institute of Chartered Accountants (FICA), MTCSME representative, SPBD, and Young Entrepreneur Council.

BAF has compiled an exciting two-day program for the conference which will be featuring local and international speakers. The speakers are experienced and have great business acumen and industry knowledge. The Friday 8 March program also includes a session where International Women’s Day will be celebrated. We expect MSME women entrepreneurs to participate in this celebration.

The program will feature relevant and important topics within the MSME sector. Topics such as; MSME An Economic Driver, Young Entrepreneur – “ New Breed Catalyst for Progressing MSMEs”, Breaking Financial Barriers – “Accessing the right finance business options for MSMEs”, Legal & Compliance Considerations – “Staying Compliant with evolving regulation”, Talent Acquisition in MSMEs – “Strategies for Success”, Women Entrepreneurs – “Strategies for breaking through gender-based obstacles”, Product Development & Quality Standards and Digital Readiness and Transformation -“Adopting technology to enhance operations”.

General Manager Ramesh Chand said that Co-operatives will be included in the conference. A session to discuss Challenges and Opportunities in Co-operatives has been included. This is a sector that needs to be supported and assisted to realize economic development opportunities and growth for Fiji in the future.

Another important session will be to discuss; “MSMEs for Indigenous Communities and People with Disabilities” a session for Empowerment and inclusivity. The program is designed to ensure that topics and sessions meet the expectations of all the participants. It is anticipated that the Conference will empower the participants and help them grow their business.

The conference offers MSMEs the opportunity to identify challenges, explore opportunities, receive knowledge on business growth, share experiences, and network with peers and potential investors.

BAF also signed agreements with the conference sponsors with Vodafone Fiji Ltd being the major sponsor. Other sponsors are, Business Link Pacific (BLP), Tower Insurance, Telecom Fiji (Technology partner), A. Hussain & Company, Star Hospitality Company, Fiji Airways Limited, Pure Fiji, Fiji Water, VanMed Lab, and Fiji Times (Media Partner). Some more sponsors are yet to be confirmed and will be announced later in the coming weeks.

The 200 seats are allocated to various Divisions, so a wide cross-section of MSMEs is represented in the event. The registration is on a first come first serve basis.

BAF would like to acknowledge all sponsors and partners for coming on board to support the Conference.

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