The Heads of Missions Consultation meeting was held in Honiara at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade from the 3rd to 5th September 2008.

Chaired by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr. Barnabas Anga, the meeting was attended by H.E Collin Beck (UN Mission), H.E Bernard Bata'anisia (Port Moresby Mission), H.E Joseph Ma'ahanua (Brussels Mission), H.E Beraki Jino (Taipei Mission), H.E. Victor Ngele (Canberra Mission) and the Heads of Division of the Ministry.

The meeting was officially opened by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and External Relations, Hon William Haomae.

Taking the centre stage during the consultation was the Energy and Food Security, Bulk Fuel Purchase and Renewable Energy.

The attendees noted with deep concern the soaring costs of energy and its subsequent impact on the economy and people and call on relevant authorities to address the situation. In so doing, measures formulated to address the crisis will take into account short, medium and long term strategies.

Also noted was the offer by Venezuela to establish cooperative arrangements to discuss bulk fuel purchase with the Pacific Island Countries. The meeting supported the on-going bilateral discussion with Venezuela and further noted that this initiative compliments the regional bulk fuel procurement agreed to by the Pacific Forum Leaders in Niue.

In support of national efforts to reduce dependence on fossil fuel, the meeting acknowledged the joint effort by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade and the Ministry of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification on the current renewable energy cooperation with Italy, Austria and the City of Milan for 17 schools located in the rural areas. The meeting further acknowledged Turkey's assistance for an additional 5 Communities.

Solomon Times will bring more update on other pressing issues that were covered.

Press Release (Government Communication Unit)