14 Apr 2011

Pacific Arts Festival will go ahead in Solomon Islands says organiser

1:06 pm on 14 April 2011

An organiser of the 11th Pacific Arts Festival being hosted next year by Solomon Islands says despite doubts about the progress of preparations the event will go ahead.

Dennis Marita, the festival's artistic director, says the media's been reporting concerns about the country's hosting capability since 2008.

He says although not much has been built in the way of facilities, a lot's been achieved behind the scenes, including a five and a half million US dollar government commitment to the festival's 16 million dollar target budget.

"Venues are here, our people are ready. In terms of other social services, support services that is needed for the festival in terms of food and accommodation we are now already looking into that. It's just the website to work on and we are optimistic that by the end of this month we should have a website running."

Dennis Marita says the Pacific Arts Festival's economic benefit to Solomon Islands will be three times the cost of hosting it.