On 1 April, Australian Deputy High Commissioner Sally-Anne Vincent formally gifted the Golden Buoy, a symbolic icon of the Coral Sea Cable, to the Deputy Secretary of Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Moses Tepai, in a ceremony held at the Solomon Islands National Museum.
The Golden Buoy will feature in a display about the Coral Sea Cable System, which will be part of the permanent collection of the museum. The Golden Buoy was originally presented in a ceremony in Honiara in July 2019 to commemorate the landing of the Coral Sea Cable System. In that ceremony, the Golden Buoy was symbolically passed from cable contractor Vocus Communications, across to Ms Vincent on behalf of the Australian Government, to the chair of Solomon Islands Submarine Cable Company, representatives of four tribes of Tandai, the traditional owners, and finally on to the Honourable Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare.
At the handover event, Ms Vincent said placing the Golden Buoy at the Solomon Islands National Museum would ensure the historical significance of the Coral Sea Cable System was preserved for learning by current and future generations.
“The cable represents more than just next generation internet for the Solomon Islands, it is symbolic of the deep connections between our two countries,” Ms Vincent said.
“I am pleased the Golden Buoy and the story of the Coral Sea Cable System can be included in the permanent collection of the Solomon Islands National Museum.”
Deputy Secretary Moses Tepai said, “the Golden Buoy will be amongst other national artefacts that have historical significance to our country and will be part of our Museum’s modern history collection.”
The Coral Sea Cable System is a 4700 km submarine fibre optic cable, linking Sydney to Honiara and Port Moresby, bringing next-generation internet connectivity to the people of Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea. The Coral Sea Cable System connects to the Solomon Islands Domestic Network, which comprise a 730 km network from Honiara to Auki (Malaita), Noro (Western) and Taro (Choiseul). The cables deliver faster, more affordable, and reliable communications infrastructure, bringing substantial economic and development opportunities. Together, these connections allow for significant increased internet access and usage, which revolutionise the way Solomon Islands connect, learn, do business, and access services. The cables were majority funded by Australia, in partnership with Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea.