16 Feb 2004

Fiji academic lists the benefits of skilled workers moving overseas

4:47 pm on 16 February 2004

The head of the Fiji Institute of Technology says it is time to stop worrying about emigration and the brain drain and look upon it as a valuable human resource for export.

Kolinio Meo says there is a need to find niche markets for Fiji's human resources globally and the government can do this through bilateral and muli-lateral arrangements and other means.

He says the demand for local nurses and doctors from developed countries shows that Fiji's training systems are advanced.

Mr Meo says Fiji should be taking advantage of this opportunity to produce more doctors and nurses for the world market and gain both social and economic benefits through increased foreign exchange.

Mr Meo says according to the Reserve Bank, Fiji citizens working abroad sent back more than 135-million US dollars in 2002, one of the country's biggest sources of earnings.

He says the social and economic impact of pursuing this export of trained human resources would far outweigh the benefit of many multi-million dollar investment projects.