By Taromane Martin
Chinese Ambassador to the Solomon Islands, His Excellency Li Ming says Solomon Islands is a genuine friend and partner as preparations to host the 2023 Pacific Games continues.
Ambassador Ming on Wednesday announced the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) as the Pacific Games Stadium bid winners.
Ming said it will be a huge responsibility for CCECC as the stadium is a symbol of profound friendship between China and Solomon Islands.
“After a very open and transparent tendering process over the past few months, the final winning bid for the stadium project in Solomon Islands for the venue to host the 2023 Pacific Games is taken by the CCECC.
“This is a really huge project that carries out the friendship between China and the Solomon Islands. The total construction area of the stadium site is around 26,000 square meters.
“It accounts for 80 percent of the overall facilities for the Pacific Games and is estimated to start in May of this year and complete before June 2023, the year for the Pacific Games.
“Under the cooperation between China and Solomon Islands the construction work has been progressing on very well according to the timeline.
“Thank you, the Honorable Prime Minister, for your strategic and strong leadership, and thanks to the outstanding executive ability of the team lead by Dr Jimmie Rodgers.
“Thanks to other organizations and other officials in the Solomon Islands government the stadium project as I said will be the main facility for the games.
Ming also made a special appreciation to his Chinese colleagues from the CSADI team who arrived September last year to complete the design work and other supporting work for the stadium.
Chairman for the Sol2023 National Hosting Authority (NHA) Dr Jimmie Rodgers said preparations to host the games is well on track despite the ongoing challenges of the Covid-19 Pandemic.
Dr. Rodgers said the Pacific Games 2023 was the only national project that was ticking all the boxes during the height of the pandemic last year.
Ambassador Ming meanwhile said the stadium will not only be a new land mark but will inject new stimulants for the country’s economy.
“I believe the project will become another role model Chinese project not only in the Pacific but also around the world,” he said.
“China adheres to the principles of equality and mutual respect while we help assist completion with other donor countries. Solomon Islands is our genuine friend and equal partner.
“In the whole process of construction, the project will inject fresh stimulant to the economy of Solomon Islands.
“It is estimated the project will create hundreds of jobs and substantial business opportunities for Solomon Islanders in the next more than two years.
“The stadium will for sure become a legacy for Solomon Islands people and it will become a legacy for Solomon Islands-China relationship in years to come.
“Today’s announcement is an important step forward and I think it is also a start of a new journey with solid and firm support of both governments, the people of China and Solomon Islands, and the leadership of the honorable Prime Minister, I have full confidence that the construction of the stadium project will progress smoothly according to the timeline and it will become a new land mark in the skyline of Solomon Islands, in the year of 2023,” his Excellency Ambassador Ming adds.