Fiji has recently undergone reform of their secured transactions law with the help of the Asian Development Bank. The Personal Property Securities Act 2017 modernised Fiji’s secured transactions framework. Under the Act, all personal property may be the subject of a security interest, including equipment or livestock. These interests can be created by the creditor’s control or possession of the asset in question, but it also allows for a non-possessory interest, as an interest will be perfected as soon as the lender signs a security agreement that has a general description of the asset in question. The interest is then perfected by registration, control, or possession.
The act also created the notice-based Personal Property Securities Registry, that launched on the 31st of May 2019. All security interests in movable property must be registered in order to be perfected. This is a step forward from the old registration system, which required the creditors to physically attend registration offices in order to file securities. The register is also public, meaning anyone can quickly check whether the movable property in question is already subject to another security interest.
The Act takes a functional approach: any transaction that in substance amounts to a movable asset being used to secure an obligation is covered by the Act, regardless of the form of the transaction. For example, conditional sales or bills of sale are considered secure transactions and governed by the act.
Last Checked November 2020
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