Fiji’s second largest island, Vanua Levu, which has a population of about 130,000, is finally set to have its own new port, helping boost investment on the island as well as facilitate export of its produce. Plans to build a port have been in the offing for more than a decade.

The Fijian administration, as part of the country’s long standing “Look North” policy last week earmarked US$4.8 million in the national budget to consturct a port facility in Naduri, on the island. Labasa and Savusavu are the two main centres on the verdant Vanua Levu.

The first substantial port in the country’s Northern Division will help exporters by offering swifter access to their markets in around the region as well as outside. It will also help inward investment according to the island’s administration. The island will be in a position to receive vessels directly instead of overseas freight being routed via the main port in Suva.

The new port is expected to drive down the cost of doing business in the Northern Division.