11 Feb 2019

Hundreds of Solomon Islanders try out for Australia job scheme

12:52 pm on 11 February 2019

More than 1,000 Solomon Islanders are competing for 200 places in a "work ready pool" which could land them jobs in Australia.

Solomon Islanders at the recruitment drive for Australian jobs

Solomon Islanders at the recruitment drive for Australian jobs Photo: Supplied

The recruitment drive, which opened in Honiara on Thursday, is being run by the ministry of foreign affairs and external trade.

Its director, George Tuti, said it is part of Solomon Islands' participation in Australia's new Pacific Labour Scheme.

Mr Tuti said the long queues at the recruitment venue show there is no shortage in supply of workers.

He said what his ministry is working on now is reaching out to Australian employers to convince them that employing Solomon Islands workers is good for business.

"For the Solomon Islands we have "here to work brand" and so the idea behind the brand is that we send our best workers who are ready, who are willing to take the hard work of the different schemes.

"Although there is that challenge we are trying to get the best of the workers who are willing to do the job."

According to the Australian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade workers from Kiribati, Nauru, Tuvalu, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu currently have access to the Pacific Labour Scheme.

The ministry said Tonga will be the next country to join the scheme, followed by additional countries including Papua New Guinea, Fiji, and Timor-Leste.