New Vunisea Market opens in Kadavu

New Vunisea Market opens in Kadavu

By Navitalai Naivalurua
Wednesday 21/02/2024
Image: Supplied

It was a proud moment for the market vendors at the Vunisea Market in Kadavu as their prayers have been answered after the opening of their new refurbished market.

The newly refurbished market was officially opened by the Minister of Local Government, Maciu Nalumisa and the New Zealand Commissioner Charlotte Darlow.

The upgrade of the market was funded by the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade through the UN Women Markets for Change project.

The Markets for Change project promotes gender equality through the economic empowerment of women market vendors in Fiji, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu and it brings together governments, market vendors and market vendor associations, civil society organisations and UN agencies.

Livia Tubunawasa from Solodamu Village says the market has improved from before, and with the fence, they now feel secure inside the market.

She says they now have improved washrooms and a changing room, which will accommodate women vendors who are wet when they come to the market.

Tubunawasa says people should be mindful that some of them travel to the market by boat or carriers.

Unaisi Adisamanunu, who is also from Solodamu Village, says the old market structure used to leak when there was heavy rain and there was no place for them to dispose their rubbish.

She says there is no more leaking from the roof now, and they have a well-ventilated space to sell.

While opening the new market, Minister for Local Government Maciu Nalumisa says they are enhancing infrastructure that will connect communities to economic opportunities, and this market stands as proof of that vision.

He says the importance of the farmer’s market serves as a vital hub for promoting local agricultural produce and providing farmers with a platform to sell their goods.

Nalumisa adds they offer the customers the chance to support local growers and access fresh quality products.

New Zealand High Commissioner to Fiji Charlotte Darlow says effective market structure and robust market systems underpin long-term sustainability and local empowerment.

She says it is great to be able to support such work in the rural and maritime communities.

She adds New Zealand is pleased to support the upgrade and extension of the Vunisea Market in Kadavu.

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