Gov’t Keen On PPP, PM Tells Business Sector

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Prime Minister Sogavare, left, congratulates Wilson Kikolo of Kokonut Pacific Solomon Islands Pty Limited on being awarded the Prime Minister’s Award for the Business of the Year Award.

The Government is keen to expand its partnership with the private sector in a formal partnership, Prime Minister Hon Manasseh Sogavare told the business community during the Business Excellence Awards event at the Coral Seas Resorts last Saturday.

“Now I can see the new interest, provoked by the current Board of SICCI (Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industries), to form a formal partnership with the Government on the form of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).”

“I welcome this and wish to thank the SICCI Board for their vision”, he said.

Prime Minister Sogavare said he has agreed to the establishment of the partnership along with the proposed business advisory council, which he has also agreed to be its first Chair.

“My thinking is, lets start with a broad agenda then just PPP (Public-Private Partnership) because there is a lot to be discussed in order to find mutually beneficial solutions”, he said.

The Democratic Coalition for Change Government (DCCG) has been championing the PPP development model since its inception, notably on its many national projects such as the Tina River Hydro Project, the establishment of the Special Economic Zones (SEZs) and the development of the Electronic Passport system.

“I envisage that once PPP is rolled-out hopefully in mid-2017 or preferably earlier there will be many opportunities for further partnership with the private sector.

“As these partnerships will mainly work for large projects that could cost millions of dollars, the potential for making a significant impact in the economy and on job creation could be significant.

“So hopefully we can work together to strengthen our partnership. As I have said earlier, I am keen to commence this partnership as soon as possible”, said Hon Sogavare.

The Prime Minister said the private sectors plays a vital role in job creation, and that the growing private sector means that more jobs are available for the present and future generations.

“A growing economy is the only durable remedy to stemming the tide of youth unemployment”, he said.

The business excellence award night, hosted by SICCI, intends to recognize the contributions of businesses in various categories to promote excellence and innovation in production.

During the ceremony, the Prime Minister also awarded the Prime Minister’s Award for the Business of the Year which was awarded to Kokonut Pacific (SI) Pty Limited.

The other 2016 Business Excellence Awards are:

  • Exporter of the Year – Kokonut Pacific (SI) Pty Limited
  • Employer of Choice Award – Solomon Breweries Ltd
  • Entrepreneur of the Year Award – Varivao Holding Ltd
  • Business Women of the Year Award – Lynda Wate Seni of Sunday Isles Newspaper
  • Excellency in emerging Business Award – Coral Sea Casino Hotel

Excellence in Service Delivery Awards:

  • Small Business – Tower Insurance
  • Medium Business – Prestige Property Development and Management Limited
  • Large Business – Pan Oceanic Bank

Green Business of the Year Award:

  • Small Business – Pinihimae and Associates Group
  • Medium Business – Solomon Power
  • Large Business – Solo Beautification

Business Contribution to the Community Award:

  • Small Business – Kokonut Pacific (SI) Pty Limited
  • Large Business – Solrice
  • Civil Society – SIWIBA (Solomon Islands Women in Business Association)