The Consumer Council of Fiji today has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Asia Pacific Applied Economic Association to build a working relationship to jointly support and develop research activities that are mutually beneficial to both institutions.
While signing the MOU, CCF CEO Seema Shandil says the new partnership will not only strengthen the research capability of the Council but will also enable them to re-look into the already completed research.
Shandil adds this will expand from there to push for impact on policy changes and enhance the publications, all for the benefit of the Fijian consumers.
She says this will open new doors in the Asia Pacific region for the council all in the hope to create a fair market base for Fijian consumers.
The CEO says APAEA’s key aim is to provide a forum and resource based for developing the research based capacity of researchers in the Asia Pacific region and is supported by the region’s central banks and other financial institutions.
She also says CCF has a Research and Policy Analysis Division to fulfill the council’s mandate and conduct research.
She adds they do vigorous research in the area of consumer issues and based on the results, they make submissions to various Ministries and other policymakers to push for consumer positive related changes that benefit them.
The Founder and President of APAEA, Professor Paresh Narayan says one of the key features of the association is they work with policymakers.
Professor Narayan says one of their points of convergence with the two institutions is to focus on consumers.
He also says with CCF, they would like to work and co-design some of the fundamental questions that are there in the interest of consumers.
The founder adds this is to ensure the maximum impact on consumers, particularly related to consumer issues including legislations which are a big part of consumer protection.
He says he is very pleased by bringing in the experience of working in the region for the last 20 years as a consultant in various capacities but also bringing in the association and the expertise that is there.
He says they also work with Central Banks, Research Institutions and in Fiji, they have MOUs with the Reserve Bank of Fiji, the Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission, Tertiary Students Loan Scheme, Fiji Higher Education Commission and they are in talks with MOUs and related partnerships with Fiji National Provident Fund and Investment Fiji.
APAEA was formed in 2017.
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