LAST WEEK the country hosted the State Councilor and Minister of Foreign Affairs of People’s Republic of China (PRC) Wang Yi.
The historic and milestone visit came two years after the country inked the deal with PRC.
Solomon Island was the first on the list for Wang’s visit which highlighted the recognition PRC had for this country.
The switch from our old friend of Taiwan to PRC in September 2019 has caused so much uproar in the country and even abroad.
Since then Solomon Islands has been under radar for its dealings with PRC.
Its only two years but there is already some deals and benefits.
Last week the two friends have signed a total of five important Memorandum of Understandings (MOUs) including a number of signed handover certificate, signed exchange of letters and a signed agreement.
The government and many citizens have been excited about the deals and the benefits they would bring to the country.
However, others are still questioning the deals because the details of the deals were never realized nor made public.
And it’s something that the country will have to wait and see its benefit if not now, but later on.
For the record here are some of the deals and letter of agreements which were signed;
- MOU on visa exemption for holders of diplomatic, officials/ service and public affairs passport.
- Deal on duty- free treatment for products originating from Solomon Islands that cover 98% of the tariff line.
- MOU on the Blue economy cooperation and it was jointly signed by Assistant minister of commerce of PRC Ms Guo Tingting and the minister of commerce, industry, labor and immigration honorable Fredrick Kologeto.
- A handover certificate was signed on Anti- COVID Material Donation.
- An agreement on Economic and Technical Cooperation between PRC and the Solomon Islands Government.
- Exchange of letters to support National Referral Hospital Comprehensive Medical center project.
- A deal on Health cooperation between National Health Commission of PRC and SI Ministry of Health and Medical Services.
- A cooperation in areas of disaster risk reduction and emergency response.
- An announcement to recognize the establishment of sister city relationships between Jiangmen City, Guangdong Province and Honiara City Council, Solomon Islands.
With some of these deals and agreement, the country is expected to experience some benefits to its economic aspirations, climate change challenges and health systems.
Never has this country been offered such assistance and for that PRC should be commended for its recognition to address our needs.