Despite the importance of investment to Pacific Island Countries (PICs), relatively little is known about the challenges that face both foreign and domestic investors and how these groups may be enabled to meet their goals while also helping to achieve key national sustainable development goals. We also have a relatively limited understanding of the impacts associated with investment in PICs. This report examines the drivers of, and barriers to, private sector investment (both foreign and local). In addition, the research seeks to understand the benefits and costs associated with different forms of private sector investment - ranging from large scale foreign through to small scale local/Pasifika and ex(re)patriate.
Three key research questions guide the report:
- What are the potential barriers or disincentives to investment in the Pacific? To what extent can these be sustainably overcome?
- What are the costs and risks to the receiving economies of greater FDI and how can these be avoided, reduced or managed?
- How can the growth/development impact of investment (both foreign and local) be enhanced?
The report explores the motivations that lie behind investment decisions as these can shape later investment approaches and outcomes. Core motivations focus on ‘return on investment’ but the research does, however, uncover a broader range of impetuses. For some investors, these derive from existing family ties, others state that they wanted to "give something back" to the broader community by, for example, supporting the education and development of local staff and/or building environmental awareness and resilience.