PM Marape looks to increasing economic participation between PNG and Solomon Islands
By Press Release
Posted By PNG Political Limelights
Prime Minister James Marape, met with his Solomon Islands Counter-part Manasseh Sogavare in Port Moresby today.
Prime Minister James Marape said the Government of Papua New Guinea is looking forward to working with the Government of Solomon Islands to build both countries bilateral relationships from strength to strength.
Both leaders discussed issues of mutual interest which are, Border Security, Bougainville Referendum, Economic, Trade and Investment, Labour Mobility and Employment Opportunities, Melanesian Spearhead Group.
Prime Minister Marape said both countries are looking at how they can participate in the economy of each country.
“There are more PNG businesses in the Solomon Islands as well,” Prime Minister Marape said.
The Prime Minister revealed that figures in 2015 show that Papua New Guinea exported K34.35 million of goods and services and imported K14.57 million and had a trade surplus of K19.78 million.
He added that major Papua New Guinea investments in the Solomon Islands include New Britain Palm Oil Limited, Lamana Group of Companies, Bank South Pacific, Credit Corporations and other companies that are based in the country and have branches in the Solomon Islands.
“We also share an interest in the Bougainville Referendum activities and the Government of Solomon Islands has indicated that they are on standby to help deliver a successful referendum for the people of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville,” Prime Minister Marape said.
Prime Minister Marape indicated to the Prime Minister of Solomon Islands that he plans to pay a visit to his country early next year.
He also acknowledges and respects the Solomon Islands Government’s decision to align with the Government of the People’s Republic of China.
He added that it is the Government’s sovereign decision which he is confident can yield good development outcomes for Solomon Islands given the many economic opportunities that China has on offer.
Prime Minister Marape said China is a big economy that Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and other countries in the region can look at for market access to export local produce and products.
Other issues discussed were people to people exchanges, education, capacity building, and tourism and fisheries cooperation.