VNPF receives VT15M in dividend from Unit Trust of Fiji

Vanautu Minister Hon.Johnny Koanapo Rasou and UTOF Chief Executive Officer, Vilash Chand. PHOTO: UTOF

The Vanuatu National Provident Fund (VNPF) has received around VT15 million(US$127,299) in dividend from the Unit Trust of Fiji (UTOF) Tuesday.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of UTOF, Vilash Chand, presented the cheque to the Minister of Finance responsible for VNPF, Johnny Koanapo, in the presence of the Director General of Finance and Chairman of the VNPF Board, August Letlet, General Manager (GM) Parmod Achary, UTOF’s Regional Manager Sakiusa Bolaira and Head of Finance and Investment, Mahipriya Meddepola.

UTOF is one of VNPF’s offshore investments. VNPF invested around VT200 million (US$1.6 million) in UTOF in 2018 and has been receiving dividends since then.

The dividends are declared twice a year. The dividend payment received in 2019 was over VT10 million(US$84,000) and VT16 million(US$135,000) in 2020. According to GM Achary, the previous dividends have been reinvested.

UTOF’s CEO Chand said the recent dividend payment is for the period of 2020, 2021 and half of this year (January to June).

The second dividend for this year will be declared early next year. VNPF’s returns are tax-free.

He said UTOF has paid around FJD$670,000 (US$335,000) in dividend to VNPF and VNPF’s capital growth has now increases to FJD$430,000(US$215,000).

After receiving the payment, Minister Koanapo emphasised the need for VNPF to inject money into investments that give a good return to its members.

The Minister said he has invited UTOF to consider a visit to Vanuatu to share the concept of operating a unit trust. He believes this type of investment is one that can strengthen opportunities between Vanuatu and other Melanesian countries.