The European Union-funded Micro Projects Programme has approved a total grant of SBD11.3 million for 77 community projects to be implemented during 2008.

The 77 projects are spread across the 9 provinces with a sectoral focus on education, health and other social infrastructure, income generation and rural livelihood, environment and sustainable development, women and youth.

According to the Programme Coordinator, Mr Ronald Ivupitu, the Micro Projects Office is preparing Grant Contracts which will be signed with the various project beneficiaries during January 2008.

This will enable the release of the grants and the implementation of the projects by the beneficiary project committees.

The EU Micro Projects Programme is a 3 year co-operation between the European Union and the Solomon Islands Government with the specific objectives of providing rural communities with greater access to improved social services and to sources of cash income.

The project time period is April 2006 to December 2008.

During 2007, a total of 92 similar projects were approved and funded with a total grant of SBD 15.0 million.

Some of these projects are ongoing and will be completed in 2008.

A total of 169 projects will have been completed by December 2008, which adds to a total grant of SBD26.3 million.