Australia + local industry = job creation
11 May 2023
Solomon Islands construction firms and suppliers are better equipped to win Australia’s local infrastructure tenders following a workshop delivered under the Solomon Islands-Australia economic partnership.
Facilitated by Australia’s Solomon Islands Infrastructure Program (SIIP), 43 firms attended the fourth workshop in a series aimed at helping local industry benefit from Australian-funded infrastructure projects. The workshops focused on how contractors could prepare a compelling Local Content and Industry Participation Plan (LCIPP).
The LCIPP is a tool for contractors delivering Australian infrastructure projects under SIIP to demonstrate their commitment to creating economic opportunities for Solomon Islanders. Contractors are required to outline how they will create local jobs, use local suppliers, and create onsite learning opportunities for workers.
Highlighting Australia’s commitment to investing in the local economy, High Commissioner Rod Hilton said, ‘local content is an objective of Australia’s economic partnership with Solomon Islands. This means partnerships like SIIP are about maximising jobs and employment to support Solomon Islands’ national development aspirations.’
‘We want to see Solomon Islands’ labour and firms delivering our projects wherever possible,’ said Mr Hilton.
SIIP’s Local Content adviser Emma Tiaree facilitated the workshop. ‘It makes good sense for Solomon Islanders to be directly benefiting from infrastructure design, building and maintenance of infrastructure around the country,’ said Ms Tiaree.
Rodney Kavamauri, Director of Matawa Enterprises, expressed appreciation for the workshop. ‘The workshop explained what I need to do to meet the eligibility criteria and local content requirements for SIIP,’ said Mr Kavamauri.
Keynote speaker at the workshop, Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI) CEO Natalina Hong echoed the importance of local content.
‘To maximise the benefits of infrastructure investments for Solomon Islands businesses and communities, the Solomon Islands Government needs an explicit national position on local content in infrastructure development. Local participation is critical to the sustainability of infrastructure,’ said Ms Hong.
Under the Solomon Islands-Australia economic partnership, SIIP has four local content objectives – to create local jobs, promote local enterprise development, accelerate the transfer of skills and technologies, and meet Solomon Islands’ national development aspirations.