THE Solomon Islands Government (SIG) – Private Sector Advisory Group had held their first meeting on Monday in Honiara to discuss their plans for this year.
The Group was set up following the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between SIG and Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce (SICCI) last July to promote the Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement.
Chair of the Group, Riley Mesepitu, told the media it was an introductory meeting to look at the issues and challenges facing the two entities and try finding solutions to them.
Mr Mesepitu, also the Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Commerce, Industry, Labour and Immigration (MCILI) said the Group also discussed the MOU and their schedules.
Furthermore, Special Secretary to Prime Minister, John Muria Junior said one of the issues they discussed was the national budget.
He said they want to see where private sector can fit in the budget because they are the driver of the country’s economy.
Moreover, SICCI Chairman, Jay Bartlett said there a range of issues that the private sector want the government to align with their priorities like the tax reform, infrastructure, road conditions and undersea cable.
However, Bartlett believes it’s a positive step for both sectors because Solomon Islands maybe the first country in the Pacific to engage with private sectors.
The group is expected to hold their next meeting in the coming month.
They consist of members in the Prime Minister Office, Ministry of Finance and Treasury, Ministry of Development Planning and Aid Coordination and SICCI.