General Information

APPF25-General-Information

25th Annual Meeting of the Asia Pacific Parliamentary Forum
15-19 January 2017

General Information

GENERAL INFORMATION BOOKLET
The 25th Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum and related meetings will be held at the Inter-Continental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa from 15th – 19th January 2017.

REGISTRATION
APPF Members and Observers are kindly requested to register their delegates via the online registration system that can be accessed through the 25th APPF page http://www.appf25.org.fj/ or contact the APPF Secretariat for further information at:

25th APPF Secretariat
C/-Fiji Parliament
PO Box 2352
Government Buildings
Suva, FIJI
Tel: (679)3305811
Fax: (679)3305325
Email: appf25@parliament.gov.fj

INFORMATION DESKS
Information desks will be operational from 8am to 10pm at the Inter-Continental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa lobby.

SECURITY
All necessary security measures will be taken. Participants should wear their ID cards at all times in order to gain admittance to the meeting venues.

LANGUAGES
English and French are the official working languages of the APPF.

VISA EXEMPTED COUNTRIES
Citizens of the following countries are not required to obtain a Fiji visa when travelling to Fiji.

Australia, Canada, Chile, China, Columbia, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, The Federated States of Micronesia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, The Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Russia, Thailand, United States of America.

However, citizens of the following countries require pre-arranged visas which can be arranged through the Fiji Immigration Department. You can also send your visa application forms and a copy of your passport biodata to the APPF secretariat on appf25@parliament.gov.fj.

Cambodia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Lao P.D.R., Mongolia, Peru, Vietnam.

Getting to Fiji
Nestled in the middle of the South Pacific Ocean, Fiji may seem far away, but getting here is fairly easy. Fiji Airways, Fiji’s national carrier, has regular direct flights from many international destinations (Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington, Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney, Singapore, Hong Kong, Honolulu, Los Angeles, and seasonal flights from San Francisco).

Nadi International Airport is the main gateway to the country for most travellers and there are several domestic airports scattered throughout the islands.

Helpful Tips
Here are some helpful information to help you whilst in Fiji.

Temperature
Fiji enjoys sunny, tropical climate as we have two seasons: warm and even warmer. That does not mean it never rains here, but you can expect May to November, our cooler months, to range from 19° to 29°c and from December to April, the temperature register from 22° to 33°c.

Geography
Fiji is a very hospitable land of blue-green lagoons, lush rainforests, pine forests, mountains and 1,666 kilometres (1000 miles) of white sandy beaches spread over 300 islands scattered across 709,660 square kilometres (200,000 square miles) of ocean.

Time Zone
Straddling the 180th meridian, Fiji has frequently been called “the crossroads of the Pacific”. In fact, the International Date Line has been adjusted so that the entire archipelago falls into the same time zone, 12 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time.

Population and Language
Fiji’s population is approximately 837,000 made up of indigenous Fijians, Indians, Chinese, Europeans and other South Pacific Islanders. English is the official language with Fijian and Hindustani also widely spoken.

Local Customs
It is important to dress modestly when away from hotels and resorts and particularly when visiting a Fijian village. Avoid wearing a hat in a village as it is considered an insult to the village chief. It is also insulting to touch someone’s head. It's best not to wear shoes if visiting someone’s house. When visiting a village it is customary to present an inexpensive gift of 'yaqona' or kava to the “Turaga Ni Koro”, the traditional head of the village.

Health
Fiji is free from malaria, yellow fever and major tropical diseases. Inoculations are only required if travelling from an infected area. There is an effective medical system in place with government and privately run hospitals, clinics, surgical centres, dental service and pharmacies. Representatives from Ministry of Health will also be available at the conference venue.

Phone calls and Internet
Fiji’s country code is +679. Many hotels and resorts have direct dialling facilities (IDD) and card phones are available in many shops and stores. Fiji is well serviced by local mobile networks including Vodafone Fiji Limited, Digicel and Inkk Mobile. You can also arrange roaming status before travelling here as well as on arrival. Access to the internet and email is available at the Inter-Continental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa.

Currency and Banking
The Fijian dollar is the basic unit of currency, available in denominations of $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100. Coins are 5c, 10c, 20c, 50c, $1 and $2. Normal banking hours are 9:30am to 4:00pm, Monday – Friday and 9:00am to 1:00pm on Saturdays at selected areas. There is a 24 hour currency exchange service at the arrivals concourse at Nadi Airport.

Tipping
We don’t encourage tipping, but you may offer extra payment for outstanding service, if you wish.

Electricity
The electric current is 240 volts AC 50Hz. Fiji has three-pin power outlets, which are identical to Australia and New Zealand. Leading hotels and resorts offer universal outlets for 240v or 11v shavers, hair dryers and other electrical appliances.

Quarantine
To avoid the introduction of foreign plant and animal pests and diseases, we prohibit the importation of vegetable matter, seeds, or any animal product without a permit from the Ministry of Agriculture.

Taxes
A 9% Government Value Added Tax (VAT) is applicable to all goods and services in Fiji. Visitors staying in hotels and resorts are subject to 10% Hotel Turnover Tax (HTT) and Environment Levy of 6%.

VAT refund scheme
The Fiji VAT refund scheme allows tourists to claim a refund (subject to certain conditions) of VAT paid on goods purchased in Fiji and taken out of Fiji via Nadi International Airport as the final port of departure to a foreign destination.

What are the conditions of the Scheme?
To be eligible for a VAT refund under the Scheme, you must satisfy all the following:
1. Spend a minimum of F$500 (VAT Inclusive) in any of the approved licensed retailer outlets during your stay in Fiji and take the goods out of Fiji within 2 months from the date of purchase.
2. Carry the goods with you as check-in baggage or hand luggage.
3. Purchase the goods from an approved licensed retailer. You must ask the retailer for a refund form and a tax invoice(s) for goods purchased.

So if you are spending over FJD$500 at Jacks, Tappoo etc make sure you ask them for the refund form. The licenced retailer must complete the form and attach receipts.
Customs Duty and Duty Free Concessions
A bona fide passenger disembarking in Fiji is entitled to the following duty and VAT free concessions:
 Dutiable goods accompanying passengers (other than alcohol and tobacco products) not exceeding F$1,000.00 in value.
 Goods that are owned by passengers and not intended as gifts or for sale - personal effects, household effects for returning residents or intending residents, articles taken out of Fiji on departure on which duty and tax have been paid.

Every passenger 17 years and over can bring into Fiji the following goods duty and VAT free, provided they are accompanied and not for sale:
1. Cigarettes, not exceeding 250 sticks or
2. Cigars, not exceeding 250grams net weight or
3. Tobacco not exceeding 250grams net weight or
4. Any combination of (1) to (3) above, provided the total net weight does not exceed 250grams
5. Spirituous liquors not exceeding 2.25 litres or
6. Wines, not exceeding 4.5 litres or
7. Beer, not exceeding 4.5 litres or
8. Any combination of the goods in paragraph (5) to (7) above, provided that the combination does not exceed the equivalent quantity under any one paragraph
9. Other dutiable goods, not exceeding F$1,000.00 in value.
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General Information

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