6 Nov 2008

Solomon Islands govt will not take an aggressive stand on Solomon Telekom

11:40 am on 6 November 2008

The Solomon Islands government has now decided to not take a aggressive stand on the telecommunication monopoly held by Solomon Telekom but to negotiate it out.

The Special Secretary to the Prime Minister, John Keniapisia, says that the Government had originally wanted to liberalise the industry by pushing through the necessary legislation during the up coming Parliament meeting in November.

However, Mr Keniapisia says that the Government has decided instead to address the issue through negotiations with Solomon Telekom.

He says the Government does not want to send the wrong signal to investors by being seen as bulldozing its way by legislation and wants instead to use the review clause in the license to negotiate with Telekom in good faith the monopoly clause in the 15-year license.

However Mr Keniapasia says the Government is "most likely to revert to the option of using legislation if the up coming review talks fail to resolve Solomon Telekom's 15-year old monopoly status under its current license.