The Commodities Export Marketing Authority (CEMA) revitalisation and recapitalisation implementation government project continues to make headway regardless of the COVID 19 impacts weighing-down on National programs.
Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare was updated yesterday by the CEMA Board and Management of the work completed in the past few months.
- Review and completion of the Assessment Report with costing of repairs and maintenance of three buying centres in Malu’u/Auki in Malaita, Pakera/Kirakira in Makira Ulawa, Noro/Gizo in Western Province and Honiara warehouses and storage facilities.
- Conducted third site visits and valuations of the proposed Noro land allocation for CEMA by the Western Provincial Government. Also met with the WPG Executive regarding transfer of the FTE title, discussions on the proposed Joint Venture Agreement between CEMA and WPIC. The Land Valuer and Engineers also did preliminary assessment and presented concept plan for establishment of the warehouses, storage facilities and refinery mill;
- The Central Islands Provincial Government Premier signed a Memorandum of Agreement with the CEMA Board and Management for the Tulagi land for refinery and Hakama land for livestock processing facility setup. Construction work on these sites will resume as soon as FTE titles are transferred.
Further, the CEMA Cabinet Sub Committee and CEMA Board and Management submitted the CEMA revitalisation budget of SBD$12.05m for 2022 Development through the Ministries of Commerce, Agriculture and Infrastructure Development. The CEMA budget allocations for the Ministries are; Commerce SBD$4m, Agriculture SBD$2.05m and Infrastructure Development SDB$6m. However, the Ministries of Commerce and Infrastructure confirmed their inclusion of the CEMA budget into their 2022 Development Budgets except for the Ministry Agriculture.
The Ministry of Commerce recently signed a Memorandum of Agreement with the CEMA and other Private Sector exporters and logistics to implement the Ministry’s price subsidy program for rural farmers.
As with work in Progress, the Prime Minister was informed, that site visits and assessments continue for Gojuru, Lata, Choiseul Bay, Tulagi and Manekalaku Buying Centres to determine repair cost.
Repairs and maintenance of Honiara Warehouses and site clearance on the Noro land continues.
Challenges include, land allocations in the Provincial Centres to establish CEMA operations will be a huge setback towards reopening the former buying centres and refinery in the Provinces. This is now currently being addressed through meetings convened with the PS Lands and Commissioner to assist in dealing with the identified land at the Provincial Headquarters and possible transfer of the FTE titles before the year ends.
Prime Minister Hon. Manasseh Sogavare responded briefly by commending everyone behind CEMA’s achievement so far.
“We’ve seen a lot achieved, you are our heroes,” said the Prime Minister.
He said, the revitalisation of CEMA is among the government’s best decision.
Prime Minister Sogavare said, refining of our natural resources has been a dream of successive governments. Value adding of coconut, cocoa and other products is an important agenda of the government of the day.
The government will ensure the industry is protected and looked after.