External Trade

Stephen Dikea from the Customs and Excise Division doing his presentation on the Rules of Origin

“The PACER Plus trade agreement is one of the important trade agreements for Solomon Islands once it comes into force”.

These were the sentiments from the Director of External Trade Mr. George Tuti while giving his presentation during a PACER Plus awareness program to Tulagi, in the Central province on Tuesday 15 October.

 The Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER Plus) is a comprehensive free trade agreement between 14 members of the Pacific Islands Forum (PIFs).

Participants from Central Province who attended the awareness program on Tuesday.

 Solomon Island was amongst the first countries to sign on to the trade agreement in June 2017.

 Since signing on the agreement Solomon Islands is yet to actually ratify the PACER Plus.

 As part of its preparations to ratify the agreement the Government through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade (MFAET) is currently carrying out awareness programs to all nine provinces to inform people about the Trade Agreement.

The awareness program also aims to inform stakeholders of the opportunities that are readily available to take advantage of but also appreciating the many challenges that must be address in order for Solomon Islands to meaningfully participate under the PACER Plus agreement. 

Central Province is the sixth province for the PACER Plus team to conduct an awareness program in.  The last province was Makira.

The PACER Plus agreement includes trade in goods; trade in services, investment, Development & Economic Cooperation and Regional labour Mobility.

Under any Free Trade Agreement like the PACER Plus, the parties reduce duties and other regulations of commerce that restrict trade.

Deputy Premier of Central Province Hon. James Galini giving his opening remarks before the PACER Plus program begun.

PACER Plus Agreement has been negotiated since 2009 and was concluded in April 2017.

The awareness program that was held at the Provincial conference room was attended by more than 30 participants and included vital discussions between the presenters and the participants.

Participants from the province, which included the Deputy Premier and the Speaker, raised many key questions, which was what the awareness program was all about.

Specific presentations on the Rules of Origin (ROOs) and the Labour Mobility program were also done during the program.

After Central province the team will head to Western, Isabel and Rennel & Bellona to conduct similar programs there.

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Solomon Islands and European Union Officials after their bilateral meeting on Tuesday.

As part of preparations towards Solomon Islands accession to the European Union (EU) and Pacific interim Economic Partnership Agreement (iEPA), government officials have held a bilateral talk with the EU in Suva, Fiji on Tuesday. 

John Kanai from SI Chamber of Commerce delivering his presentation.

From the far western end of the Solomon Islands (Choiseul) two weeks ago to the far eastern end of the Solomon’s (Friday 27th September), Officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade (MFAET) and Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce (SICCI) officials took to Lata, the provincial head quarter of Temotu province the PACER Plus awareness. 

Candidates during last week’s recruitment process

The Solomon Islands Government through the Labour Mobility Unit (LMU) in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAET) last week held a successful recruitment drive for potential meat workers in Honiara.

Trade Commissioner Mr. Joseph Ma’ahanua delivering his remarks during the launch of the Trade Portal.

The Solomon Islands government has launched its first ever-national trade portal.

The trade portal is one of Solomon Islands obligations under the PACER Plus agreement, which the country signed in June 2017.

Director of External Trade Mr. George Tuti doing his presentation at the Choiseul Provincial Chambers on Tuesday.

“The PACER Plus trade Agreement will be very vital for the Solomon Islands if we want to increase investment within the country, particularly by New Zealand and Australian investors”.

Director of Trade George Tuti doing his presentation  his presentation

30 participants from the Malaita Provincial Government, Private sector, and line Government Ministries were present as the External Trade Department within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade (MFAET) in collaboration with Customs Division carried out an awareness program on the Pacific Agreement on Close Economic Relations (PACER Plus) in Auki Yesterday (Wednesday).

Director of Trade, George Tuti doing his presentation

As part of the Pacific Agreement on Close Economic Relations (PACER Plus) preparation towards ratification of the agreement,  the External Trade Department within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade (MFAET) has begun its roll out on its awareness programs for the country.

Over 7000 seedlings were handed over by the Trade Commissioner within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Mr. Joseph Ma’ahanua to the SASA community in Auruligo , on Tuesday.

In a new publication, the Hon Milner Tozaka, Caretaker Minister of Foreign Affairs and External Trade of the Solomon Islands, as the Lead Spokesperson of the Pacific Island Countries (PICs) on PACER Plus, has refuted the misrepresentations and erroneous claims made by the Pacific Network on Globalization (PANG) about the regional trade agreement between PICs, Australia, and New Zealand.