24 Oct 2013

Landowners in Solomons say they will offer land for runway extension

4:33 pm on 24 October 2013

Landowners in the Western Province of Solomon Islands have agreed to offer a further parcel of land for the extension of the new runway in Munda.

The runway has been completed with the help of New Zealand's largest single aid package, and will allow for international flights so tourists can more easily visit the remote islands.

But a terminal still needs to be built to service both international and domestic visitors, and an additional 600 metres of land is required to cater for an air freight plane to service the growing fishing industry in Noro.

The Solomon Star reports community elders in Dunde as saying they are prepared to offer land for the extension, but talks need to continue with government delegations before the deal is finalised.

The tribal leaders have also supported land reform proposals as a way to resolve long-running ownership disputes that have prolonged the Munda runway project.