Private Sector maps pathway to COVID-19 Recovery

Outgoing SICCI Chairman, Jay Bartlett (left) and President of EASI, Reuben Tovutovu with Strategy Document after the launch. Photos: SICCI Media
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THE Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI) in partnership with the Economic Association of Solomon Islands (EASI) officially launched the Private Sector Pathway to COVID-19 Recovery Strategy with members of the businesses community on Wednesday 24th March.

The launching coincided with the Annual General Meeting (AGM) and election of new Board members for the Chamber of Commerce.

The recovery strategy highlights focus areas for the Government to prioritize and create the right settings for future private sector growth to bolster the COVID-19 economic recovery

The strategy document contains the private sector’s perspectives on how the Solomon Islands Government can best support business in the economic recovery in the next three years.

SICCI Chief Executive Officer, Natalina Hong has said “This Strategy will be used to focus SICCI consultations and collaboration with Government on the 2021 national budget that to ensure tangible action on key reforms.

This Pathway to Recovery Strategy has already been submitted to Government during its consultation process.

In his speech from the Throne recently, Governor General, Sir David Vunagi has highlighted that the DCGA have noted the ‘Private Sector Pathway to COVID-19 Recovery Strategy’ submission by SICCI and EASI. It demonstrated that the Government are serious about their inclusion of the private sector as key players redirecting their policy in the recovery of the COVID19 impact economy.

EASI President, Reuben Tovutovu hopes Government will take on board what is recommended in the document to support the private sector.

“EASI is pleased to collaborate with SICCI in the finalization of the document and our Association stand ready to render support to SICCI in the areas that our members have the expertise such as economic analysis, research and other developmental related areas,” he said during the launch.

Mr Tovutovu said as an association representing professionals who rely on and use data every day, EASI wants to see both the private and public sector invest in data collection and storage.

“I know it is expensive, but the returns to having timely, reliable and accurate data cannot be overestimated. We live in the global economy that is now heavily relied on data and information,” he said.

Key thematic areas were detailed in the SICCI Strategy to shape Government’s focus for 2021 and beyond. These areas emphasis that recovery lies in getting the basics right to create certainty for businesses and provide immediate support to alleviate pressure on business. Medium to longer term actions to stimulate economic activity and improve productivity via infrastructure and sector support; and fundamental Reform to create a better business environment for future growth and prosperity.

The Pubic Accounts Committee (PAC) amongst others written submission requested were also presented with copies of this Strategy when representatives of SICCI appeared before the Committee earlier this week on Monday 22 March.