Fijian Holdings Limited (FHL) group general manager Sereana Qoro has assured there is no political interference in the dealings of the locally-owned investment company because it is heavily regulated.Qoro said the operations of FHL operated under very strict guidelines as a publicly listed company and operated in accordance to rules and regulations governed by the South Pacific Stock Exchange (SPSE), Capital Markets Development Authority (CMDA) and the Reserve Bank of Fiji (RBF).
She said there was no chance for political interference because the company had to comply with other requirements of other regulatory bodies.
Questions were raised on just how independent the operations of Fijian Holdings would be after sudden changes were made by the interim Government on the board of the investment company with no consultation with the shareholders, in particular Class A shareholders.
“FHL is a publicly listed company so there is no chance for political interference. We operate with very strict rules and guidelines that dictate how we operate,” Qoro told Fijilive.
She said announcement were made to shareholders via the Stock Exchange.
“The protection of shareholders at FHL is paramount. FHL’s operations are heavily supervised (by the SPSE, CMDA and RBF) as a publicly-listed company for the protection of shareholders,” she explained.
“If there is some fear out there in the public, there’s no ground for that because the people (appointed) in the board are not new. The chairman for instance (Isoa Kaloumaira) has been there for the last nine years,” she said.
Qoro revealed to Fijilive that she is part of FHL’s succession plan, a strategic plan that has her on the top of the list as a contender for the group general manager’s position at FHL.
Qoro manages two fairly large subsidiaries of FHL – Fiji Industries Ltd (cement factory in Lami) and Basic Industries Ltd, which includes Hume Industries in Lami and Standard Concrete Industries around Fiji.
FHL owns 50.1 per cent of Fiji Industries Ltd and 51.1 per cent of Basic Industries Ltd.
“So these appointments, including my appointment is strategic in a way in that recruitments are done within FHL for that very reason,” she said.
“So, as you can see, we can’t unilaterally do anything. These companies have its own articles of association, their own rules.”
As for the appointment of the new Merchant Finance and Investment Company, Qoro said” We’re going into the market for a replacement and we will be engaging KPMG (chartered accountants) for that”.
“As I have said earlier, there will be no change in our strategic direction with the change in our management and the growth we have achieved in the lat 24 years, we’re moving forward to ensure we grow that even more into the future,” she said.