Ground-breaking Ceremony for Noro Roads Improvement

Ground-breaking Ceremony for Noro Roads Improvement


June 19, 2024, marked the ground-breaking ceremony for the Noro Roads Improvement Project.

The event in Noro, Western Province, was attended by World Bank representative, contractor, the Permanent Secretaries of the Ministries of Finance and Treasury (MOFT), and Communication and Aviation, Supervising Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Infrastructure Development (MID), the Premier and the Provincial Secretary of Western Province, and community leaders in Noro town.

Mr. McKinnie Dentana, Permanent Secretary of MOFT, highlighted the significance of this moment for the stakeholders in Noro. He appreciated the World Bank’s support for Noro Roads under the Second Solomon Islands Roads and Aviation Project (SIRAP2) through a rigorous negotiation process. “Noro, as an economic hub with numerous businesses, requires high-standard roads to foster the region’s economic growth” he added.

Ms. Alison Ofotalau, World Bank Operations Officer, stated that “starting these road works is a significant step toward improving the life for over 7,300 residents in the Noro and Munda wards”. “This project is more than just the construction of roads; it is about building a better future for the community,” she said.

To make the roads climate resilient, the works will repair potholes, raise road levels, and improve the road surface and drainage systems. The benefits will be extensive: safer and more reliable access to markets and essential services, including employment, health, and education; reduced travel times; and lower vehicle operating costs; thereby enhancing the quality of life for Western Province residents.

Premier of Western Province, Hon. Billy Veo, who is also a member of the provincial assembly for Noro ward, expressed his appreciation to the World Bank and the national government for prioritizing Noro Roads. He stated that the upgraded roads will significantly boost economic activities in Noro, Western Province, and the country as a whole.

Supervising Permanent Secretary of MID, Mr. Andrew Houlia, spoke on behalf of the ministry, emphasizing the Noro Roads’ importance to the communities. He encouraged community members to respect and support the contractors throughout the construction process.

The China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) has been appointed as the contractor for the Noro Roads upgrading works, which are funded by the World Bank through SIRAP2 at a total cost of over SBD 100 million.

In addition to the Noro Roads improvements, SIRAP2 is also constructing four new bridges in Malaita (Kolofe 1, Kolofe 2, Su’u Harbor, and Bira Bridges), upgrading Honiara and Munda Airports and Santa Cruz (Lata) Airfield, investing in air navigation systems in Makira-Ulawa and Temotu Provinces, and supporting regional airport maintenance.


Solomon Islands Roads & Aviation Project 

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