A ground breaking ceremony next month will pave the way for the Auluta Oil Palm Project in Malaita Province.The Cabinet has set 27th February as a tentative date in response to a request made by the Committee in the area responsible for the ground breaking ceremony.
In an interview with the National Express, the National Coordinator for the Oil Palm Projects in Solomon Islands, George Boe, said that the land acquisition process has already been completed for nine areas of tribal land earmarked for the project in the Auluta area.
Mr. Boe said that acquisition process for an additional three tribal land areas in East Fataleka is going towards completion, while five other tribal land areas for the project are also being processed in the same area.
"This means that a total of more than 4,000 hectares of land is now ready for the project," Mr. Boe said.
But the government still needs another 1,500 hectares before the ground breaking ceremony can take place to actually kick start the project, he adds.
He said when the 6,000 hectares have been formally acquired, the next step is for the Commissioner of Lands to hand, as perpetual estates, to the Trust Board of the land owning groups.
A one-day meeting with the Palm Oil Organizing Committee and the Landowners Trust Board is scheduled to take place in Auki today.
"The meeting will discuss equipment for nurturing of young palm oil plants now in Honiara for research work in the Fofotana land."
Research work will involve providing sample of plants for the project which will be determined during today's meeting.
Copyright © 2009 The National Express Newspaper. All Rights Reserved