PNG PM Marape to visit Solomon Islands


Papua New Guinea Prime Minister James Marape’s historic state visit to the Solomon Islands is not going to be empty-handed.
That’s the sentiment echoed by the PNG Acting High Commissioner to the Solomon Islands Dr John Balavu when confirming the arrival of Marape tomorrow.
The three-day visit is part of Marape’s first official diplomatic visit to the country.  
This trip has been planned a long time ago and it’s going to happen on Thursday, Dr Balavu said.  
“My Prime Minister is not coming empty-handed.
“He’s got to be bringing something to the Solomon Islands.  
“I don’t want to foretell anything but Prime Minister himself will make his presentation to the Prime Minister of Solomon Islands.
“On that logic, people of the Solomon Islands themselves will know the real purpose of PNG Prime Minister’s coming here,” he said.
The High Commissioner said PM Marape is trying to keep his promise that he made a long time ago.  
And his visit to the country later this week will be a witness of the fulfillment of his promise to the Solomon Islands Government, he said.
“This is to firm up the cordial relationship as part of the bilateral and diplomatic relations between both countries, Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea.  
“There are a lot of similarities between both countries and PNG has a traditional obligation to assist the Solomon Islands in terms of scholarship especially on the financial assistance and other unified important obligations and matters,” Dr Balavu said.
“We do things under the spirit of Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG), in recognition and commitment for representing the Melanesian identity whose members are defined by common cultural heritage and traditions.
“These sorts of attainments between these two countries has strengthened the bilateral relationship from strength to strength and compromises the ongoing cordial relationship between both countries,” he said.
The PNG envoy added PM Marape will be accompanied by private sector representative.
“This is because PNG is also one of the major investors in the Solomon Islands, from the hotel industry to construction businesses, they are also here to do discussions on further business matters,” he said.
The visit will take place from Thursday until Saturday 27-  29 February, 2020.