The bilateral relations between Solomon Islands and Israel was the centre of discussion between Prime Minister Hon. Manasseh Sogavare and the visiting Israeli Ambassador His Excellency Roi Rosenblit this afternoon.
The Ambassador designate of Israel to Solomon Islands and to the Pacific Island States is based in Tel Aviv.
During the courtesy meeting, the visiting Israeli Ambassador, H.E Roi and PM Sogavare dialogued on development cooperation and ways to explore new prospects of enhancing current cooperation.
On potential areas for future cooperation, Agriculture is one of the important sectors in terms of generating revenue and sustaining the livelihood of Solomon Islanders. It was highlighted that the sector provides up to 85 percent of the total rural population with food, cash crops, and livestock for daily livelihoods and social security. Furthermore, the agriculture sector also contributes 24% of the national GDP. This collaboration will certainly boost and help Solomon Islands achieve, Food sovereignty, Improve livelihood, Improve the agro sector for import substitution and Increase food trade.
Ambassador Roi adds, in terms of education, Israel also offered Solomon Islanders scholarships to undertake agriculture studies at Israel’s AICAT College. This initiative is to enhance new agricultural skills and know-how and develop their expertise in the related fields of agriculture. Currently, there are no Solomon Islanders enrolled under this AICAT program.
Prime Minister Hon. Manasseh Sogavare said, Ambassador Roi’s visit is timely where the Post-COVID environment calls for more innovation and answers to meet the challenges our economies and countries have gone through.
The Prime Minister adds, Solomon Islands look to Israel in areas of technology transfer (ICT), capacity building through educational research and trainings, agriculture and food security.
“We will really need to look back on our existing technical cooperation and spell out clearly what we can work on together so that we progress them.”
The Prime Minister states, Solomon Islands would like to see many of its nationals to be trained in Israel, get Israeli qualifications and enhance their knowledge on some of the modern cutting edge technology that Israel can provide.
Solomon Islands and Israel signed Diplomatic relations on the 1st January 1989. In May 2009, Israel established its Honorary Consul Office in Honiara. On the 23rd May 2012, the Government of the State of Israel and the Government of Solomon Islands signed the Agreement on Visa Exemption for holders of Diplomatic, Service and National Passports of either party. Furthermore, in August 2012 the Israeli’s Agency for International Development Cooperation, MASHAV signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Government of Solomon Islands on Technical Cooperation and Development. Through MASHAV, Israel is proposing assistance to the Solomon Islands in terms of assisting Solomon Islands get fumigation machines for broader biosecurity, Support the re-establishment of an agriculture Research and Training Centre, Develop an exchange agricultural training scheme and support the cocoa and coconut industry.
As a career diplomat with Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs since 1994, Ambassador Rosenblit specialises in diplomacy, foreign relations, national security, and political analysis.
-PM Press Sec