Acting Prime Minister Manasseh Maelanga and New Zealand High Commissioner Ms Marion Crawshaw. Photo credit: GCU.

                                               Acting Prime Minister Manasseh Maelanga and New Zealand High Commissioner Ms. Marion Crawshaw. Photo credit: GCU.

Acting Prime Minister Manasseh Maelanga is keen to see New Zealand assistance towards policing in Solomon Islands after RAMSI leaves in 2017.

Mr. Maelanga echoed the sentiment when meeting the New Zealand High Commissioner to Solomon Islands Ms. Marion Crawshaw yesterday.

High Commissioner Crashaw said New Zealand is keen to support Solomon Islands after RAMSI leaves and one of the key areas discussed was policing assistance.

Mr. Maelanga said general security, especially, policing services have improved significantly since the arrival of RAMSI in the country and there other areas that Solomon Islands and New Zealand could partner to see further improvements on.

On border security, Mr. Maelanga highlighted, this is one of the areas both countries could look into strengthening in any future policing arrangements between the two governments.

He said strengthening border policing in areas such as Immigration, Quarantine, Customs and general policing services is essential to ensure the border is peaceful for those in that location.

At the conclusion of the meeting, the two leaders have expressed that further support from New Zealand will promote lasting peace in Solomon Islands.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Hon Milner Tozaka has signed a revised Joint Commitment for Development with his New Zealand counterpart, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon Murray McCully in Wellington, New Zealand last Monday.

A government statement highlights, the Joint Commitment for Development (JCFD) is the key agreement between both countries that sets the shared vision and commitment of both governments on the priority focus areas of development assistance and cooperation.

The revised Joint Commitment is based on the goal of “achieving economic growth, a well-educated workforce, and a safe and stable Solomon Islands”.

The four priority areas under the revised JCFD are economic growth, quality education, safety and stability and partnership.

The finer details of the development assistance will be discussed by officials of both countries in the implementation of the various programmes and projects that fall under those four key priority areas.

Minister Tozaka was on an Official visit to New Zealand as Guest of the New Zealand Government after attending the Forum Trade Ministers’ meeting in Christchurch.

The Minister is due back in the country this weekend.

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