Solomon Islands needs transformation: Rarawa

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BY GEORGINA KEKEA

THE Governor of Central Bank of Solomon Islands (CBSI), Denton Rarawa last month during the launch of CBSI’s 2017 annual report called for a reform to transform.

Rarawa in his speech said 2018 is a special year for the country as we will be celebrating 40 years of Independence in July.

He said this reflection enables us to look back on our journey, our successes and failures.

“What do we want to achieve in the next 40 years? What kind of country do we want Solomon Islands to be in 40 – 50 years from now? What type of living standards do we want our people to enjoy in the future?” he questioned.

He said as this year is the final year for the current parliament and the Government before the national general elections, Solomon Islands is at an important crossroad in the country’s history.

He said people will soon have the opportunity to choose new leaders that will take the country forward into the future. He said Solomon Islanders have the opportunity to change how things are done in the country.

Meanwhile Rarawa said it is widely known that growth and development in the country have been far from inclusive.

“Let me give you some examples.  After harvesting and exporting 37 million cubic metres of our logs, 1.2 million tons of our tuna, 1 million tons of copra and 1.1 million tons of palm oil that earned us $32 billion in the last 40 years; many of our villages and communities are yet to enjoy the “social and economic livelihood for all” articulated in our national strategic vision statement.”

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Rarawa said many of our people still do not have access to safe drinking water, access to affordable energy supplies, proper sanitation, proper schools and well-stocked clinics, all weather roads, airports and regular shipping services.

He said in order for the country to develop and progress, we must build buffers and be resilient to disasters.

He said the economy needs to grow, on average between 5-7 percent annually.

“This is the challenge facing our country going forward.  To prepare our country for the next 40 years, we must reform the structure of our economy.”

Rarawa also called for effective leadership as development partners are ready to assist the country but Solomon Islanders must take the lead in the transformation process.

Rarawa in his talk last month was based on the theme ‘Reform to transform’.

CBSI for this year’s 40th Independence celebrations will be issuing a new $40 note and a coloured $2 coin.

These currencies are expected to be released soon.

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