A Solomon Islands Government Delegation left Solomon Islands for Papua New Guinea over the weekend on a study visit to the Papua New Guinea/Indonesian Border.

The delegation led by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & External Trade, Mr George Hiele, includes the Solomon Islands High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea, His Excellency Mr Bernard Bata'anisia and other Senior Government officials from Prime Minister's office, Foreign Affairs and Immigration.

Mr Bata'anisia said the purpose of the visit is to observe and study how Papua New Guinea and Indonesia manages their common border and to see various developments taking place in each other's border.

He added that this will also enable Solomon Islands to have a better understanding and appreciation on how Papua New Guinea and Indonesia manages their common border which in turn will help Solomon Islands in its management of its border with Papua New Guinea on Bougainville.

The visit was agreed to at last year's Joint Border Committee Meeting in Buka, on the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea between Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands Government officials.

The delegation will first travel to Vanimo, Sandaun Province of Papua New Guinea where they will meet with the Governor and senior officials of the Sandaun Provincial Government. The delegation will then travel on to the Wutung Border post between Papua New Guinea and the Indonesian province of Papua and will meet with various Law Enforcement Officials manning their common border.

From the Wutung Border Post, the delegation will then travel by road to Jayapura, capital of Papua Province of Indonesia where they will meet the Governor of Papua Province and his officials as well as to meet with the Chamber of Commerce and Trade and other relevant officials in the province.

The visit is being facilitated by the Papua New Guinea Government and Indonesian Government through its Embassy in Port Moresby, says High Commissioner Bata'anisia.

The Solomon Islands delegation returns to Solomon Islands on Sunday 16 May 2010.

Source: Press Release, Government Communications Unit