2 May 2007

Solomon Islands delegation to bring up recovery phase at Pacific conference

3:17 pm on 2 May 2007

The Solomon Islands is expected to ask for further assistance at talks in the U.S. next week as it enters the the rehabilitation phase of recovery from the tsunami and earthquake.

The secretary to cabinet and the prime minister, Dr John Roughan, says thousands of homes need to be rebuilt now they are moving out of the emergency period.

The deputy prime minister, Toswell Kaua, the Foreign Affairs Minister, Patteson Oti, and the Minister of Planning, Steve Abana, are all travelling to Washington to attend the Pacific Island Conference of Leaders next week.

Dr Roughan says one of the issues the delegation will be talking about will be the costs facing the country in the wake of the devastation.

"The emergency phase - nations have been very generous but the rehabilitation phase is, I would think, is going to be even more expensive and now that the tsunami is off the front page of our newspapers and media, which organisation, which state will come to assist us."

Dr John Roughan.

The U.S. Secretary of State, Condoleeza Rice, is expected to meet the Pacific leaders at the conference.