18 Mar 2005

Solomons Opposition leader begins visit to China

9:23 am on 18 March 2005

The Opposition leader in Solomon Islands, Francis Billy Hilly, is expected to begin a 10-day visit to China today, at the invitation of the administration in Beijing.

The Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation reports Mr Hilly is leading a seven member delegation of Opposition MPs following an invitation from the Chinese government.

Mr Hilly says that since the establishment of diplomatic relations with Taiwan about 22 years ago, Solomon Islands has seen very little trade benefit from that relationship, except for cash grants which he says aren't sustainable.