TAIWAN in its final attempt to salvage its ties with Solomon Islands has promised to pour in more projects for Solomon Islands as part of assisting the country.
Taiwan Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Szu-chien Hsu announced this following his arrival in the country on Monday for a brief visit.
But his announcement fell short of fulfilling the plans after Cabinet made its decision to cut dies with its long time ally – Taiwan on Monday.
Dr Hsu following his arrival announced that the Republic of China (Taiwan) has offered more support in two different scale should the ties continue.
He said for the major projects it would include; Infrastructure Development Support to the Constituency (IDSC), education scholarships, National Transport Core projects and Women-Micro funding.
“In terms of the IDSC offer, it will be an annual one for the constituency to support social and economic infrastructure construction projects and that should be issued on project based from our embassy to the constituency accounts,” he said.
Hsu said the second bigger project is on education scholarship by extending the current education support to fund local students to study at the Solomon Islands National University (SINU) where each student will receive a scholarship worth SBD $10,000 each year.
Currently 125 local students are doing their studies in Taiwan. However, following the decision most of them would be recalled.
The third major project is on the National Transport Core project.
Under this project, the Taiwanese government was ready to work together with the government of United States, Australia, New Zealand and Japan to help develop the country’s transport projects.
The fourth one which is a new one called Women’s Empowerment Micro fund which they have already applied it in Marshall Islands and they believe it is also suitable for Solomon Islands.
He explained the fund is mainly to help the grassroots women to start their own small business which they believe would also increase employment rate and would be helpful for women.
He said the other four minor projects have also been discussed with the Solomon Islands Foreign Affairs Minister during his recent trip to Taiwan is to do with firstly the 2023Pacific Games National Stadium.
The Foreign Minister said the second project was to revive the Dodo Creek agriculture research centre in Guadalcanal which they have also provided assistance in the past but was destroyed during the tension period.
Hsu said the third minor project was to renovate the Gwounaru’u airstrip and its terminal building in Malaita province.
He said the fourth one was the Palm Oil Outgrowth Scheme in Guadalcanal where their focal point is the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL).
Given the decision by Cabinet on Monday most of the projects will no longer be implemented.
By IAN M.KAUKUI