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Solomon Islands classed among least developed Pacific countries

SOLOMON Islands, according to stats quoted by the Leader of the Official Opposition Hon Jeremiah Manele, is one of the only four Least Developed Countries (LDC) in the Pacific.

Manele told Parliament that he believes though that it is their (Parliamentarians) overall mission and vision to work towards graduating Solomon Islands being a LDC into a developing country in the next 10 to 15 years.

Sir, there are currently 48 LDCs in the world – 34 from Africa; 9 from Asia; 4 from the Pacific (Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, Kiribati and Vanuatu); and 1 from Latin America.

“Vanuatu will be among the next two or three countries that will be promoted from LDC status and Samoa graduated in 2014,” said Manele.

He then added that the government needs to work closely with the United Nations on a possible timeframe for Solomon Islands’ graduation, taking into account the various LDC international programs of actions adopted over the years.

“Sir, that means we must improve our health, education, as well as, economic indicators.

“The vehicle to do this, is through the National Development Strategy (NDS) 2016 to 2035.

“The government and all stakeholders must be committed to using the NDS as the road map for its development endeavours in the next 15 years,” the Opposition Leader added.

The medium term plans based on the NDS must underpin the country’s annual budget allocations especially development budget funds.

Manele then reiterated that it is important that the government brings the proposed planning bill to parliament quickly.

“This bill or legislation i understand will legislate for the NDS to become an Act of Parliament,” Hon Manele said.

This is vital to ensure that the NDS is not sidelined whenever there is a change of government.

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