The U.S. is a powerful, stable society that is capable of supporting other communities who need assistance. Providing aid to other nations can benefit the U.S. in return. The U.S. benefits from foreign aid to Fiji.
According to the U.S. Department of State, assistance from the U.S. to Fiji is focused mainly on humanitarian services, such as hurricane relief and security assistance.
In 2006, a tumultuous coup suspended democratic rule in Fiji. In 2014, the country held elections to restore the democratically elected government. The U.S. was one of 13 countries to oversee the elections to maintain security measures and ensure a peaceful political process. In return, the U.S. received increased access to trade and resources in the region.
One of the most important trades the U.S. and Fiji take part in is the tourism industry. According to the Fiji Bureau of Statistics, 842,884 foreign nationals visited Fiji in 2017. While not all of these were U.S. citizens, the number of Americans visiting Fiji is increasing. In addition to tourism, Fiji’s economy is stimulated by foreign consumers buying Fijian products.
The biggest exports from Fiji to the U.S. are bottled water, tuna and sugar. In return, the U.S. exports transport equipment and food. However, access to Fiji’s tuna is one of the U.S. fishing industries’ most vital investments. The U.S. created a multilateral trade agreement with the Pacific Islands (including Fiji), which allowed U.S. fishers to access the tuna-infested waters in the Pacific Islands.
The agreement also protects the Fiji fish population from overfishing and other things that may cause harm to marine life in the area. This, along with the trade of other natural products, increases both Fiji’s economy and natural resource protection. It also helps with U.S. relations in the area and product importation.
Fiji is a small island with a large economy, which not only needs the U.S. to help support economic prosperity but also to protect democracy in the region. The U.S. benefits from foreign aid to Fiji through access to crucial natural resources and through Fiji’s influence as a newly reorganized democracy in the Pacific Island region.
– Molly Atchison