Author Archives: Solo boy

Lock down the journos

Have you ever imagined journalists being locked down for half a day and shut out from the daily happenings in their work environment?

It was an experience I came across in Canberra when hundreds of Australian journalists were stripped of their communication gadgets and shut from the rest of the world for nearly seven hours before the Treasurer handed down Australia’s national budget in parliament on May 10th 2011.

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How important is our fishing industry?

Fisheries and the marine environment support the livelihood and aspirations of communities and national economies in the Pacific Islands.

The Solomon Islands is among the islands countries so rich with marine resources, and in particular fish.

Fishing is an important activity at 3 different levels of the community: subsistence production, small-scale cash fishing, and the large-scale offshore fishing industry.

photo by Raphael Bick

Small-scale cash fishing is most successful near urban markets, especially Honiara.

Since the early 1980s, 31 fishery centers providing refrigeration and marketing services have been established throughout the country.

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Doing business in the Solomon Islands

The Solomon Islands moved up ten points to 96 out of 183 economies this year on the ease of starting a business in the country, according to the World Bank ranking.

Photo by metroflags

A higher ranking on the ease of doing business index means the regulatory environment is more conducive to the starting and operation of a local firm, based on 9 topics, made up of a variety of indicators.

These include starting a business, dealing with construction permits, registering property, getting credit, protecting investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts and closing a business.

But while there is the 10 points upward movement on the ease of starting a business here, almost all topic rankings made negative moves in 2011.

According to the World Bank report, the only improvement on the nine topics was on the area of getting credit which shot up 78 points to 89 from 167 last year.

There was no movement in the enforcement of contracts.

In relations to procedures, it takes up to 17 days to get approval of a company name from the ministry of commerce and up to a month to register the name of company with the registrar of companies.

Other procedures take only a day or two.

The overall country performance in procedures is ranked 7, compared with other Melanesian Spearhead Group members.

Papua New Guinea sits on 6 and both Vanuatu and Fiji are on 8.

Source: (The World Bank)

Blogging in the Happy Isles

How effective is blogging in a country with scattered islands like the Solomon Islands?

Image by SEDACMaps

Solomon Islands is made up of nine provinces, each consisting of many islands, languages and cultural backgrounds.

Honiara, the capital city is situated on the biggest island of the country, Guadalcanal.

The other provinces and towns spread over a vast ocean, east of Papua New Guinea and west of Vanuatu.

With the huge area of seas separating the provinces and islands, means of communication can be quite difficult.

Use of mobile phone has just reached some of the communities living on the islands.

Internet access and use however is just something of a dream for so many people on the islands.

Even in the capital city, Honiara, not everyone who work in offices have access to internet.

It will therefore be some time before comments to bloggers from every section of the society is possible, possibly after five more years.

Solomon Telekom and other responsible organizations may wish to comment.