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Fiji markets itself as retreat for billionaires during pandemic

by ace
Fiji markets itself as retreat for billionaires during pandemic

Like tourism industry gradually reopening around the world, Fiji made an unusual appeal to billionaires seeking a retreat during the pandemic.

The South Pacific The country, made up of about 300 islands, depends heavily on tourism, which normally accounts for 40% of its gross national product (GDP).

After telling the Fijian parliament last week that his vision for a "post-coward society" included a gradual resumption of his travel industry, Prime Minister Josaia "Frank" Voreqe Bainimarama offered an open invitation to billionaires who want visit the country.

In a frank statement on Twitter Earlier this week, he wrote: "So, let's say you are a billionaire who wants to fly your own jet, rent your own island and invest millions of dollars in Fiji in the process – if you took all necessary health precautions and with everyone the associated costs, you can have a new home to escape the pandemic in paradise ".

The country's attorney general, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, confirmed on Thursday that a group of high-income individuals were allowed to travel to Fiji.

Speaking during a national budget consultation, Sayed-Khaiyum said that about 30 people from "a well-known company" would soon arrive in the country by private planes, before taking a seaplane to their final destination, where they would stay for three months. .

"In our view, this is a balance between managing our health risks and also opening up economic paths; it is extremely important to do so," added the attorney general.

Fiji has also started an initiative called "Blue Lanes" to welcome tourists arriving by yacht.

Sayed-Khaiyum said that travelers can fulfill the 14-day quarantine period on board their private ships prior to arrival or docked in Fiji. They would be free to "roam" the country after a negative Covid-19 test.

He added that Fiji would also host film and television crews, as long as they followed quarantine measures.

Last week, Fiji's prime minister announced that the country was working on a travel plan called Bula Bula between itself, New Zealand and Australia.

The prime ministers of Australia and New Zealand have not yet commented on the proposal, which was named after Fiji's greeting in Hello or Welcome.

Fiji confirmed 18 coronavirus infections in total, according to the World Health Organization. There have been no deaths from the virus and no new cases have been diagnosed since mid-April.

CNN's Lilit Marcus contributed to this report.

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