THE 4th Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF) Leaders Summit is now currently underway in Honiara, with the theme ‘Stewardship for Healthy Oceans & Nations’.
It kicked off with an official opening ceremony at the Lawson Tama stadium yesterday.
This is a historic PIDF meeting for the Solomon Islands as well as the Forum because it is the first to be held outside of Fiji, its country of birth.
Present at the ceremony were leaders from the member countries, Tokelau, Vanuatu, Nauru, Kiribati, Tonga, Tuvalu, Federated States of Micronesia, and Fiji.
The chief guest of the program was the Prime Minister of Fiji, Voreqe Frank Bainimarama.
Speaking at the occasion, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare welcomed the regional leaders to the shores of the Hapi Isles and said it is an honour to receive such an event in the Solomon Islands.
“On behalf of the people and Government of Solomon Islands, I would like to welcome you to Honiara for this 2016 Pacific Islands Development Forum Leaders Summit.
“It is a great honour to receive this event in Solomon Islands. I am glad to say that this is not the first time that we hold a reigional high-level meeting of this nature but this one is special to us.
“I say it is special because it is the first time for the PIDF Leaders Summit to move out of its home base,” Mr Sogavare said.
He added, the event is significant especially with the presence of Charter Members, Foundation Members, Technical Partners, International and Regional Organizations.
Mr Sogavare also welcomed the presence of representatives of the State of Kuwait, the Peoples Republic of China, Indonesia, Timor Leste, New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea, the Republic of Pakistan, United States of America, the Pitcairn Islands, and the Territory of Wallis and Futuna Islands.
Chief Guest, the Prime Minister of Fiji, Voreqe Frank Bainimarama also shared his remarks during the opening ceremony where he highlighted the importance of the summit and that on behalf of the PIDF, it was his pleasure to join the host country to be part of the summit.
The Summit will end today.
By RONALD TOITO’ONA