THE Asian Development Bank stands ready to provide assistance for some of the policy priorities of the Democratic Coalition for Change Government.
An ADB delegation comprising Xianbin Yao, its Manila-based Director General for the Pacific, Dr Andrea Iffland and Mr Hayden Everett from the bank’s Pacific Liaison and Coordination Office in Sydney met with Prime Minister Sogavare, Thursday, to find out how ADB can assist his government with its development priority areas.
ADB’s is assisting Solomon Islands in the areas of infrastructure development, private sector development and government service delivery and public financial management.
The ADB infrastructure development support covers roads, shipping, the Undersea Cable Project and 4th USP Campus Project.
It is allocating US$40Million for these areas this year.
Furthermore, ADB is looking at an opportunity to further support government service delivery and financial management this year.
“We are currently assisting the country in Infrastructure development and private sector reformation,” Mr Yao told Prime Minister Sogavare.
“We want to learn from you the priority areas of your government and see what areas we can assist you on,” he added.
The ADB Regional Director for the Pacific said Solomon Islands has been doing very well on the reform front and has earlier received grants for good performance.
He added that ‘further good performance will be further rewarded.’
The Prime Minister in turn outlined his DCC Government’s Policy intentions, which he said boils down to the reasons why the country collapsed in the year 2000.
He said the country adopted a highly centralised development policy at independence resulting in the mass migration of people from the provinces to Honiara in search of economic opportunities.
The Prime Minister said his government is determined to address this situation by taking economic development right down to the provinces but the fulfillment of this policy intention requires the freeing up of land and establishment of infrastructures.
He said in this regard land reform will be aggressively pursued and much money has to be injected into infrastructure development.