16 Sep 2003

ADB says underlying causes of Solomon Islands problems need to be resolved

4:24 pm on 16 September 2003

The Asian Development Bank says the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands or RAMSI must work on solving the underlying causes behind the 2000 ethnic conflict.

This comes after Australia, through RAMSI, paid the Solomon's outstanding debts of over three million US dollars owed to the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank.

Dr Peter King, Director of the ADB's Pacific Department says RAMSI's efforts in restoring law and order are not enough to turn the economy of the Solomons around.

He says the causes behind the conflict between the Malaitans and Guadalcanal people have still not been properly addressed.

"Resumption of law and order is not sufficient. Clearly the underlying causes of the conflict was of an economic nature and those underlying causes, still need to be addressed and so the donor communites and the Solomon Islands government will need to work together to put in place a economic recovery programme."

Dr King says both the ADB and the World Bank will hold talks next month with the Solomons government to discuss the kind of assistance needed.