Officials from Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea Immigration Authorities have finalizes a draft bilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), and a Standard Operation Procedure (SOP) for the upcoming Pacific Game in Honiara later in November 2023.
These documents were progressed following a one-week bilateral working group meeting in Honiara from 30 January to 3 February 2023 on the invitation of Solomon Islands Immigration Division.
Solomon Islands Deputy Director of Immigration, Mr Chris Akosawa acknowledged the offer from the Papua New Guinea Immigration Citizenship Authority for supporting the SI Immigration to prepare for SPG 2023.
Mr Akosawa commended the joint agency bilateral working group meeting as a timely preparation.
Solomon Islands Immigration is supported by the PNG ICA as part of deepening relations the two countries.
The PNG ICA team led by the Deputy Chief Migration Officer, Mr Wellington Navasivu assured SI Immigration that they have important roles to play when it comes to border security to protect citizens of both countries through sharing common borders, people relationships and common security challenges.
Mr Navasivu said, PNG ICA is ready to support Solomon Islands Immigration in the areas of trainings, and logistic for the SPG 2023; ensuring that SI Immigration is ready to facilitate and process huge numbers of athletes, visitors, diplomats and heads of delegations participating in the upcoming SPG 2023 in Honiara.
PNG ICA is willing to share from the lessons learnt when hosting the 2015 Pacific Games and other similar events including the Asia Pacific Economic summit.
Solomon Islands hosting the SPG 2023 in Honiara is a mile stone achievements for the Solomon Islands Government where PNG ICA is willing to assist Solomon Islands Immigration Division to ensure that safety and security of the country’s borders.
The draft MOU is expected to be expedited soon.
The draft MOU involves various opportunity for security cooperation, trainings, information sharing, and operationalizing the joint border operations at the SI-PNG Western borders.