New Zealand, Solomon Islands boost partnership

New Zealand and Solomon Islands are boosting their partnership in areas aimed at enhancing security and prosperity, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says.

“Solomon Islands is a very important Pacific partner for New Zealand, and we are pleased to be findings ways to do more together for mutual benefit,” Mr Peters says.

“Aviation, connectivity, security, economic development, disaster response and resilience, labour mobility and strategic infrastructure are just some of the areas where we are looking for enhanced cooperation.”

While in Solomons, the New Zealand delegation is meeting with Prime Minister Jeremiah Manele and other political leaders to discuss shared development priorities and regional challenges, including New Caledonia; attending an event to handover the Seghe Airfield; signing a refreshed Air Services Agreement; and laying a wreath at the Bloody Ridge WWII memorial.

“The enhanced Air Services Agreement will improve the freedom of air services on routes between New Zealand and Solomon Islands,” Mr Peters says

“This will benefit tourism and business travel, allow for easier travel for seasonal workers, and offer better trade potential.”

Mr Peters is accompanied in Solomon Islands by Minister of Customs and for Seniors Casey Costello; Chair of the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee (FADTC) Tim van de Molen; FADTC members Damien O’Connor and Teanau Tuiono; and Chair of the Labour Pacific Caucus, Jenny Salesa.

Solomons is the first destination of the delegation’s Pacific tour this week, to be followed by Nauru and Niue.