The Reserve Bank of Fiji says investment and consumption activity remained weak in the first three months of the year, indicating subdued confidence amidst continued economic uncertainty.
However strong growth was noted in second-hand vehicle registrations by 122.2%, driven in part by the budgetary changes around vehicle imports.
Consumption indicators in the country declined over the year as reflected by the drop in net VAT collections by 27.8%, new consumer credit by 24.1%, new vehicle sales by 17.8% and registration by 17.2%.
Partial investment indicators such as domestic cement sales dropped by 8.4% and new investment lending by 25.8% also declined annually.
Job advertisements declined over the year by 75.8% in March, driven by reduced recruitment intentions across most major sectors.
This was corroborated by the annual fall in net compulsory Fiji National Provident Fund membership by 64% over the same period.
Meanwhile, assistance from the Government and the FNPF via the COVID-19 withdrawal scheme continues.
In April, the FNPF support was extended to provide relief for mortgage payments and members affected by the recent lockdown measures.
Excess liquidity in the banking system surged past the $1 billion mark in March and is currently more than adequate at $1.451 billion.
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