An Interagency delegation from the White House – United States of America led by Mr. Kurt Campbell, Deputy Assistant to the President and Coordinator for the Indo-Pacific National Security Council and his eight member delegates have arrived in Honiara yesterday.

This visit builds on earlier interactions SIG has with the US and the significant reopening of the US Embassy in Honiara on 2nd February 2023. Discussion between the two countries today will touch on current SI-US Bilateral relations, US Bilateral assistance, potential partnerships in the areas of economic development, public health and other areas of mutual interest.

The reopening of the embassy in the Solomons comes as Washington has been negotiating the renewal of cooperation agreements with three key Pacific island nations, the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia and Palau.

There are growing concerns among Washington and its allies about Beijing's military ambitions in the Indo-Pacific region after it struck a security pact with the Solomon Islands last year.

In September 2022, U.S. President Joe Biden hosted Pacific island leaders in a Washington summit at which he pledged to help stave off China's "economic coercion" and promised to work harder with allies and partners to address islanders' needs.

A joint declaration between Washington and 14 Pacific island states resolved to strengthen their partnership and said they shared a vision for a region where "democracy will be able to flourish."

With Reuters