Sunny forecast for Solomons economy in 2015
The Central Bank of Solomon Islands says the economy will recover slightly from a slump brought by the April floods.
The Central Bank of Solomon Islands says the economy will recover slightly from a slump brought on by the April floods.
The Governor Denton Rarawa says the bank had predicted 3.4 percent growth in 2014 but cut it drastically to below one percent after the floods.
M Rarawa told Koroi Hawkins there has been a positive turnaround since then with GDP growth of up to two percent.
DENTON RARAWA: I think the, the Solomon Islands economy faces a lot of challenges and I, I believe the government is aware of these challenges and will put in place policies to address these challenges. But basically, Solomon Islands economy needs to grow. Needs to grow so that the growth in economy keeps pace with the growth in population. In that way the population can benefit from this growth. Otherwise if there's no growth and the population continues to grow then we will see a slow down in economy and poverty will increase as a result of this. So the challenge for the new government is to ensure that there is growth in the economy. And that growth must be inclusive, it generates new jobs for the lot of young people that come out from the schools and join the work force. And so I think if I can put my finger to one major issue, that will be the major issue, and I am very please to hear the prime minister yesterday talking about supply side policies and I think this is really putting the nail on the issue.
KOROI HAWKINS: And what does that mean, supply side policies?
DR: It means we have to grow the economy, more production of what we are producing now, fish, agriculture more production of what this country can produce.
KH: As it stands what are your projections for the coming year?
DR: Our preliminary projections are for 2015 is positive we are looking at around three to four percent growth, this will come from our current sources of growth.
KH: So you are talking about increasing or developing the existing areas or industries in the country?
DR: Existing industries we can expand and increase production where ever possible but in the medium to longer term we have to find new sources of growth. For example the tourism sector, we've always talked about it. If the government can implement policies, activities that really result in the tourism sector growing. We've received 24,000 visitors last year, if we can increase that number to 50,000 in the next few years that would be a major improvement or a new source of growth that we have not seen previously. So that's what we are referring to and the prime minister is talking about this as well in terms of his reference to supply side issues.
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