ISABEL Province last week engaged in an online dialogue with Shandong province of China.
The event was conducted at the Chinese Embassy in Honiara.
In attendance were Premier Leslie Kikolo, Deputy Premier & Minister for Community Affairs Toni Vahia, Provincial Secretary John Lokumana and Chinese ambassador Li Ming.
On the other side of the video link were senior officials from agriculture, trade & commerce agencies of Shandong Provincial Government of China.
Chinese companies of infrastructure, energy, fishery, and university representatives also participated in the dialogue.
Premier Kikolo said this was the first ever video webinar between two provinces and congratulated on the 100th anniversary of the founding of Communist Party of China.
He made an excellent introduction about Isabel Province.
“Isabel is well known for its beautiful scenery, abundant resources of fish, agriculture, mines and government owned parts of land to attract investors and tourists, but lack of capital, human resources and infrastructure are major bottleneck of development,” Kikolo said.
He emphasized that Isabel province firmly supports SI-China relationship based on One China principle.
He also thanked Chinese Embassy for facilitating the online dialogue and looked forward to further cooperation and exchanges with Shandong Province.
Senior government officials from Shandong Province separately briefed Kikolo and his officials on the economic and social development of Shandong and spoke highly of the prospects of cooperation between two provinces.
Shandong province is also famous for its strong economy, huge market, advanced technology, especially in areas of agriculture, infrastructure, maritime resources & technology.
Shangdong is the third largest province in terms of GDP in China compared with other 30-plus provinces.
Shandong province looked forward to more dialogue and cooperation with Isabel province in the future, including fight against COVID-19, trade & investment, people-to-people links.
Representatives from Shandong companies also expressed their interest and willingness in the provincial relationship.
Ambassador LI Ming gave a briefing on the fruitful outcomes in the past two years since the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Solomon Islands.
He highlighted the area of provincial cooperation and said the economic structures of Shandong and Isabel provinces are highly complementary with each other.
“The Chinese Embassy stands ready to continue to assist two provinces in enhancing dialogue, promote mutual understanding and making progress in cooperation,” Ming said.
He also announced during the dialogue that the Chinese Embassy together with Shandong Province will donate a certain number of desktop computers to high schools in Isabel province.