PRIME Minister Rick Houenipwela has signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Pacific Labour Mobility Scheme with the Australian Government at the margins of the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) in Nauru on Tuesday.
Prime Minister Hou signed the MoU with the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Senator Marise Payne.
Speaking during the occasion, the PM Hou acknowledged and thanked the Government of Australia and the new Foreign Minister Senator Payne for facilitating the new agreement.
The signing of the MOU is a commitment made by both countries following the meeting between PM Hou and former Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in Canberra in July this year.
“Solomon Islands have never taken full advantage of this opportunity. We can provide the work force and I am pleased that Australian employers have highly recommended workers from Solomon Islands because they are hard workers,” he said.
PM Hou said he is grateful to officials from Solomon Islands and Australia for facilitating the milestone signing.
“The signing today is a win-win situation for both countries,” he said.
Foreign Minister Senator Payne said Australia was also pleased to sign off the agreement with Solomon Islands.
She acknowledged that the signing further enhances the relationship between the two countries.
The new labour mobility scheme is an integral part of Australia’s efforts to promote greater economic cooperation with the Pacific and help strengthen the region’s economic resilience.
It provides Pacific island workers with opportunities to gain valuable skills and income, and assists businesses in rural and regional Australia.