DAY’s OCEAN SUMMIT HELD IN HONIARA

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare and Minister for Police and National Security Hon. Peter Shanel, sitting sixth and seventh from the left, with Permanent Secretaries and Government officials and participants in the Ocean Summit at Heritage Park Hotel. Photo credit: OPMC.

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare and Minister for Police and National Security Hon. Peter Shanel, sitting sixth and seventh from the left, with Permanent Secretaries and Government officials and participants in the Ocean Summit at Heritage Park Hotel. Photo credit: OPMC.

A one day summit on the role of the ocean in the development of the country was held in Honiara today.

The summit’s discussions will go towards an Ocean Management Policy which will be part of the Government’s 20 year National Development Plan.

Policy Secretary for Resources Dr Chris Vehe says the Ocean is extremely valuable to Solomon Islands people and the Government.

Dr Vehe says the ocean makes up 98 percent of Solomon Islands and people have strong cultural connections to the sea as communities depend heavily on its rich fisheries and marine resources for survival and income.

He says the government’s revenue is also heavily dependent on the country’s fisheries and marine resources.

He however said these resources are at risk from both local and global activities like pollution, over harvesting, and destroying fish habitats in the ocean.

The Policy Secretary also says global pressure on Solomon Islands ocean from climate change is increasing the sea surface temperature and increasing storm intensity, sea-level rise and acidification of the sea-water.

Dr Vehe said the Democratic Coalition for Change Government acknowledges the importance of the marine and coastal resources to Solomon Islanders and vows to do more to protect the benefits derived from these aquatic commodities.

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