Two items in today's Fiji Times concern the ships that come to Malau bringing tourists and also goods. Seems like a good thing for Labasa.
Tourists need more time to shop
Tuesday, August 09, 2011
TOURISTS need to be given more time to visit the town because this will provide them with the opportunity to visit shops and spend, says Labasa Chamber of Commerce president Ashok Karan.
Mr Karan said such was highlighted by tourists during their visit to Labasa last weekend. "Services and recreational activities for tourists is expected to gradually increase in Labasa given the frequency of cruise ships visiting Labasa but more time needed to visit shops is something that was pointed out by tourists themselves," Mr Karan said. "In the previous two visits, it was experienced that tourists were not left with much time to visit shops and spend money. We would like tourists to have sufficient time to spend in Labasa Town because this will allow the local businessmen to get something in return," Mr Karan said.
Labasa Macuata Tourist Association president Paul Jaduram shared similar sentiments. "They definitely need more shopping time and this concern was raised by the tourists," Mr Jaduram said. "We have some elderly persons on the cruise therefore we have to be mindful of their schedules and not tire them out." He said this concern would be discussed in their meeting next week.
Malau cuts freight costs
Tuesday, August 09, 2011
BUSINESS houses in Labasa are utilising Bligh Water Shipping services from Lautoka to Malau. The service has saved businesses transportation costs from Nabouwalu and Savusavu. MV Suilven embarks on its third trip to Malau today.
Sales manager Roberta Lepper said business was steadily booming as forecasted.
With school holidays jusy two weeks away, students have booked tickets.
"The number of passengers using the service has increased as we had expected," Ms Lepper said. "We have on board some trucking companies such as CJ Patel and those transporting sugar across, and the ship also transports fertiliser to the North," she said.
Labasa Chamber of Commerce president Ashok Karan said business houses noted a drop in freight charges. "Businesses are saving freight costs which would have otherwise been transported from Lautoka to Suva, then shipped to Savusavu or Nabouwalu and then transported to Labasa via road," Mr Karan said. "The direct boat service is saving businessmen road costs." The transportation of machinery and plant equipment to Viti Levu has been made much easier too, Mr Karan added. "The Lautoka-Malau is also much safer compared to Savusavu where the waters have high turbulence," he said.