SOLOMON Islanders who want to trade their products to Japan are hoping the embassy recruits a trade officer this year.
This comes as the Japanese Embassy in Honiara prepares to become independent from Papua New Guinea.
The Honiara office has been operating under Japan’s Embassy in Port Moresby since 1978.
However, the Japanese Foreign and Finance ministers have agreed to open six new embassies around the world, and Solomon Islands is identified as one of them.
Assistant Research officer of the Japan embassy office in Honiara, Hudson Kalaeda, said one of the benefits of this upgrade will see the increase of capacity in the office.
However, Mr Kalaeda said he is not sure which areas the embassy will venture into during its separation from its main office in PNG.
But he said the embassy will still perform its usual function of providing projects, scholarships and visa processing to Solomon Islanders.
Mr Kalaeda said one area he saw many Solomon Islanders who approached their office enquired about was trade.
However, he said the embassy could not assist them in trade because there was no officer recruited to deal with their needs.
He said it’s still unclear whether the embassy will recruit a trade officer or not, which depends entirely on their bosses.
First Secretary of Japan Embassy, Tomohiro Odai said the reason behind the upgrade is to enhance Japanese’s diplomatic tie with Solomon Islands and to celebrate the 70th Anniversary of World War 11.
Mr Odai said more than 20,000 Japanese soldiers have died in Solomon Islands with 7,000 bodies still remain here.
He said the Japanese government is trying to get all the remains back to Japan.
By EDDIE OSIFELO