NatureFiji-MareqetiViti was launched on 30th June 2007, as the working arm of the Fiji Nature Conservation Trust, a non-profit making, non-governmental, non-political and charitable Trust, registered in Fiji under the Charitable Trusts Act (Cap. 67).
That NatureFiji-MareqetiViti is run according to the Trust's mission will be the responsibility of a board of seven trustees. When NatureFiji-MareqetiViti has reached critical momentum, a member-elected council will be responsible for the policy and direction adopted by a small secretariat which will run day to day operations.
NatureFiji-MareqetiViti-MareqetiViti's mission is to enhance biodiversity and habitat conservation, endangered species protection and sustainable use of natural resources of the Fiji Islands through the promotion of collaborative conservation action, awareness raising, education, research and biodiversity information exchange.
Overview of Fiji's Biodiversity and Conservation Sector
Fiji's terrestrial biodiversity resources of Fiji are of global importance. As is true of most isolated island groups, Fiji's terrestrial flora and fauna demonstrate a high degree of endemism (unique occurrence of species within a limited geographic area) - over half (56 percent) of Fiji's 1,594 known plant species are endemic, with some groups being completely or almost entirely endemic (e.g., 24 of 25 native species of palms in Fiji are endemic). More than 40 percent of the native forest cover of the islands is still intact, and some islands, like Taveuni, still have contiguous forest cover stretching from the mountain peaks to the coast. Forested areas provide habitat for a wide array of unique birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians, insects and other invertebrates.
Unfortunately, Fiji's Protected Areas System remains poorly developed both in terms of ecosystem representativeness and availability for visitor access and appreciation.
In contrast to many of its neighbours Fiji does not have a nature conservation or wildlife non-government organization, however, many international NGOs have set up in Fiji and currently at least seven operate in the country. While Fiji has benefited greatly from their presence, particularly in respect of employment opportunities and the resources they bring, there are some downsides. The lack of local NGO development, lack of local conservation management capacity development and the precedence of global as opposed to national or cultural concerns.