Wednesday, 19 February 2014 7:57 AM

Actions Announced to Improve Small Businesses

Solomon Islands Prime Minister, Hon. Gordon Darcy Lilo has announced new actions of the government to improve the establishment and growth of small business enterprises in the country.

One of the immediate tasks is to engage consultants to research and consult with relevant stakeholders on a suitable financial system where indigenous Solomon Islanders can access capital to undertake small and medium enterprises.

“This process will involve a review of existing financial mechanisms and the formulation of the proposed Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Bank in the country,” Prime Minister Lilo said at the opening of a new Isabel Development Company (IDC) timber processing facility in Honiara on Friday.

In this process, a taskforce will be established shortly to review, evaluate and improve existing and new policies and legislations that will increase opportunities for more business activities in the country.

This will give the government basis to allocate adequate resources through the relevant Government Ministry for small and medium enterprise growth and development by indigenous Solomon Islanders.

To begin the process, the government this year will improve and implement the investment registry, trade and marketing database, investment, marketing and trade negotiations and training workshops for local companies and investors.

Prime Minister Lilo added that the Government through the ministry of Trade will continue to provide financial and technical assistance to existing and potential successful businessmen and women to actively participate in the growth and development of SME’s.

“We will continue to engage consultants to research and consult with all stakeholders on suitable financial systems and on programs where indigenous Solomon Islanders can access capital to venture into small and medium enterprises,” Mr Lilo said.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Lilo has congratulated IDC for expanding its business profile to include a downstream timber processing facility in Honiara.

He said the Government is encouraging downstream processing of local resources, especially, timber products from round logs to timber and from timber to furniture and other products.

One of the Government Priorities is to create an environment that is conducive for such industries to thrive as timber products have high demand in the domestic, regional and international markets.

The new IDC timber processing facility provides a market outlet for local timber producers to sell and further promote the country’s unique tropical hardwood in the domestic and international markets.

 

Source: Press Release, Government Communications Unit