The Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI) is encouraged by the new Government's prompt release of their Policy Statement.

In a statement, the Chamber expressed its support on the outlined principles of "transparency, accountability, responsibility and respect for the rule of law".

"The Chamber would also agree with the Government's view that given the two and a half years time frame of policy implementation, it is wise to identify priority areas of; reconciliation and rehabilitation, national security and foreign relations, infrastructure development, social services sector, economic/productive sector and civil affairs."

The Chamber recognises that due to the eventual decline of the logging industry, which makes up 68% of foreign earnings, and over 16% of formal employment, the forestry sector must be made more sustainable and profitable and substantial growth in other sectors must be encouraged as a priority.

Government plans for re-forestation and increasing projects for downstream processing of timber are therefore important and supported by the SICCI.

The Chamber applauded the stated Government objectives of new oil palm developments, issuing new prospecting licenses (mining sector), new tuna loin factories, new regional industrial seaports and aiming to more than double tourist numbers.

It says that the implementation of these policies will undoubtedly be difficult and costly but their success is crucial to the development of the country.

The SICCI, in its role of positive advocacy and partnership with the Government, gladly offers its support and services to help the successful implementation of the new development initiatives.