Wednesday, 11 July 2007 10:39 AM

Government to Expand Services to Rural Areas

The national government has put together strategies to ensure that services reach the rural sectors of the country.

In his 29th Independence anniversary message, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare said in partnership with the Solomon Islands post office, seven new 'light' ANZ branches will be opened in areas which do not have access to banking services.

The Prime Minister also revealed that in addition to that, two rural mobile banks will operate on Malaita, whilst Guadalcanal gets its second mobile banking service.

Mr. Sogavare also revealed that the government aims to encourage more investors in the rural areas with the establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZs). Sogavare said this would ensure that Solomon Islanders obtain optimum social and economic benefits from its resources. The government will introduce in its October parliament sitting a legal framework for the SEZs.

He said these services and others yet to be announced will encourage savings and facilitate small business transactions in remote communities.