16 May 2005

Forum review group says much still needs to be done in Solomon Islands

7:20 am on 16 May 2005

The leader of the Eminent Persons Group reviewing the work of the Regional Assistance Mission says much remains to be done to bring Solomon Islands back to where it was before the ethnic tension.

Fiji's Foreign Minister, Kaliopate Tavola, says progress can only be made with consultation between the Solomons government, RAMSI, the Forum and the people of Solomon Islands.

Mr Tavola was speaking at the end of a visit to the Weathercoast of Guadalcanal.

He said the group agreed that for economic development to take place there was a need to improve infrastructure such as communications, roads and the markets.

Mr Tavola says he also wants to see an increase in the Pacific identity of RAMSI so Pacific Island countries must increase their contributions to the Mission.