Our engagement with the Solomon Islands Government (SIG) remains critical to improving the business environment and influencing policy outcomes. In the past years, our engagement with SIG have been loose and on an ad-hoc basis.
However, since July 2017, based on our priority goals, SICCI has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Solomon Islands Government (SIG) under which an Advisory Group has been established and issues of interest on behalf of the private sector are presented to the Government by SICCI. The MOU will continue to provide a structured platform for policy dialogue and engagement.
In 2017, the Chamber undertook a planned and reactive advocacy. The Secretariat focused on 5 key planned advocacy initiatives aside from responding to reactive advocacy. It was envisaged that these priorities were specific, measurable and achievable and also generally supported by other interest groups:
- Taxation – Our focus on tax is the Pay as You Earn (PAYE) threshold with the view to either increase the threshold and or reduce the rates for subsequent brackets. In 2017, SICCI in partnership with the Economic Association of Solomon Islands (EASI) had drawn up a position paper which was presented to the first Advisory Group Meeting in the first quarter for 2018.
- Infrastructure – Our focus to improve the country's infrastructure will begin with SI Ports on implementing and reducing the Ports Tariff charges and improvement in SIPA operations.
- Business health – Our focus in this area is to improve Government system in dealing with payments to Business Households and services providers.
- Agriculture – So far, the matter of the Rhinoceros Beetle (CRB) and its impact on the Coconut and Palm Oil Industry has seen significant progress. We have talked with and made the government aware about the danger of an untreated CRB spread. The issue has been taken up by the EID Department which SICCI's EID Officer is leading. Task-forces has been set up to deal with this critical matter.
- Young Entrepreneurs Council (YEC) – YEC is taking much progress since 2017. A Grant Signing Agreement was held between SICCI and the Ministry of Women, Youth and Children Affairs (MWYCA) in 2017. The work of YEC has been taken up by the Strategy Department. YEC was purposely set up to explore opportunities to assist and build capacity of young entrepreneurs to actively participate in the market.
Climate Change Private Sector
A. Climate Change Engagement started 2019, first introduction to PIFs through the Ministry of National Planning and Development Coordination to GIZ/DFAT Support for Private Sector with PIFs.
- Resulted in the document, Private Sector Mapping related to Climate Change Adaption and Mitigation in Solomon Islands completed in 2020 December.
- Formation of the Climate Finance Focus Group, comprises of SICCI, (Advocacy Department), MOFT (Climate Finance Resilience Unit (CFRU)), MECDM and PIFs
B. SICCI partnership with PIFs and the focus group resulted in the following Climate Change SICCI engagements through consultations and inclusion in three road mapping that were produced under the following:
- Private Sector Mapping related to Climate Change Adaption and Mitigation in Solomon Islands completed in 2020 December.
- PIFS-USP PRIVATE SECTOR CLIMATE RESILIENCE TRAINING launched in January 2023 and concluded in June 2023.
- Pacific Adaptation to Climate Change and Resilience Building Peer-to-Peer Learning Programme for the Private Sector in Climate Finance and Resilience May of this year (PIFS through the PACRES Project in collaborate with the Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation (national private sector organisation) and the Fiji Business Disaster Resilience Council which was the first regional Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Learning for the private sector in climate finance and resilience)
- PIFS and the PACRES Project team invited the regional private sector reps from the various chamber to present on the panel for final PACRES Project Meeting, to share your experiences and lessons about the targeted support for the private sector in your countries held in Nadi.
- Now the Melanesian Sub-regional Private Sector Workshop first time held in Solomon Islands and the final workshop for PIFS project.
- PIFs support towards the establishment of the Solomon Business Resilience Council that will be part of SICCI, which has connected Chamber to Vanuatu Business Resilience Council and UNCbi ( United Nations Connecting Businesses Initiative). Which is one of the key recommendations from the 2020 Private Sector Road Map.
- Recognition and inclusion of SICCI in the Solomon Islands Roadmap for improving access to Climate Finance and Public Spending 2022-2027 Document
- Inclusion of Private Sector in the Solomon Islands Low Emissions Development Strategy Consultants forming the draft LEDS document
- Inclusion of Private Sector in Review of the Solomon Islands National Climate Change Policy 2023 - 2033 in August 2023.
- SICCI being part of the SPREP consultation and its inclusion in the GCF Private Sector Mapping and Analysis Report under the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) 2023. The project was funded by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) as part of the provision of services to Strengthen the capacity of the National Designated Authority (NDA) of the Solomon Islands to Engage with the Green Climate Fund.
- The Pacific is a priority region for UNCBi working closely with PIFS and the Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce in setting up your business resilience council.
- As part of their support to potential networks, Solomon Islands Chamber is now invited to UNCBi events including the Global quarterly member network meetings and assist to provide SICCI with the opportunity to co-develop SICCI activity plan.
- GCF Mapping of the Private Sector Digital PDF
- Mapping of the private sector PDF
- UNDP Solomon Islands Roadmap for Improving Access to Climate Finance and Pu PDF