Solomon Islands was among the Pacific Islands delegation who attended the Pacific -Arctic Fisheries Exchange and Arctic Assembly meeting held from the 10th-15th October in Iceland.
The Solomon Islands was represented by two Senior Government officials, the Policy Secretary, Productive Sector of the Prime Minister’s Office, Mr. Celsus Talifilu and the Under Secretary (Technical) of the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Mr. Ferral Lasi.
Participants from the Pacific Islands included the Prime Minister of Cook Islands, the Minister of Fisheries of Kiribati, the Secretary General of the Forum Fisheries Agency and the Director of FAME-Fisheries, aquaculture and Marine Ecosystems of the Pacific Community.
Prior to the assembly proper that started on Friday the 13th. The Pacific Islands delegation have attended a two days Iceland-Pacific Fisheries Exchange program from 11-12.
According to the Solomon Islands delegation representative to this program Celsus Talifilu says these two days extensive exchange program is like an enlightenment.
“It showcased the journey that Iceland has taken from a very poor and backward society in the 50s to one of the most advanced societies of the world today and that the fisheries industry is the backbone to this phenomenal progress.”
“The Pacific including Solomon Islands have a lot to learn from the fisheries development of Iceland.” Says Talifilu.
Talifilu further stated that the message from this exchange is clear and that is the need to take ownership and localised the fishing industry so that the country and its people benefited more from their resources rather than anybody else.
“This is the pathway that Iceland made and have bear its fruits.” He says.
Solomon Islands is looking into furthering the learning experiences and network that has been gained in the exchange and will aggressively looked into how the country could further value add to its fisheries sector.