12 Apr 2005

Solomons provincial premier keen on reopening of SIPL

3:58 pm on 12 April 2005

The provincial premier of the Solomon Islands province of Guadalcanal, Abel Arabola, says he's keen to see the reopening of the former SIPL Oil Palm project.

Some landowners and tribal leaders are yet to sign an agreement to re-open the project because they want past grievances over land disputes and other issues settled first.

And the reopening has also been held up by a court case where some local landowners are challenging the validity of the Landowners Association which is involved in the project.

Mr Arabola says the provincial administration has no stake in the project but wants it to go ahead for the sake of the people.

"The agreement, the condition of the reopening, it looks good for the people, the resource owners. We go along with the whole idea of the reopening, but that's if there's nothing that would cause our people to have some problems that would cause them to fight amongst themselves."

The provincial premier of Guadalcanal, Abel Arabola