8 Apr 2003

Solomo Islands government wants to re-open SIPL and Gold Ridge mine

10:30 am on 8 April 2003

The Solomon Islands government has launched a project to try and re-open a giant oil palm operation and a gold mine which were shut down by the ethnic tension several years ago.

Solomon Islands Plantations Limited in north Guadalcanal and the Gold Ridge gold mine in the central of the island, employed hundreds of people and were major contributors to the country's economy.

The government, with the UNDP, has set up an Industries Rehabilitation and Retention Taskforce to try and get the industries running again.

They are now looking for consultants to advise on how to go about the process.

Meanwhile there are reports landowners at the site of the oil plantation have burnt down the trees to clear ground for food gardens, while materials from the gold mine have been sighted on sale in Honiara.