PRIME Minister Manasseh Sogavare has acknowledged the proposed signing of two Memorandum of Understand (MOU) under the Ministry of Culture & Tourism.
Prime Minister Sogavare said despite the pandemic he is pleased to note that the ministry has held fruitful meetings with the Malaita and Central provincial governments with two MOUs to be signed soon.
He said this is in regards to the continuation of the House No. 1 Project and Tourism investment facilitation programs for the Central Islands Province, which will host the Colonial History Museum of the country.
The Prime Minister said the MOU with Malaita province will be for the Malaita Tourism, Culture and Information Center project for Auki.
“The MOU will also support the idea to revisit and recommit the Forest Lake Eco-Tourism Project and Cruise Ship program for Malaita Province,” he said.
These MOU’s will set out the pathway for collaboration between the tourism & culture ministry and the Provincial Governments, for joint execution and implementation of key tourism projects over the next financial year.
Moreover, a team from the National Museum has also deployed a technical team to Nu’usi in East Are Are, Malaita Province to conduct a preliminary archaeological research to ascertain an ancient artificial mount and discovery of historical stone tools.
This will possibly lead to further intense research for discovery and removal purposes for the National Museum purposes of preserving these ancient artifacts.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Sogavare said the current pandemic has no doubt hit hard on the tourism sector.
“The current COVID-19 crisis has led to national quarantines and global travel bans, bringing international travel to a standstill. These measures are expected to have a long lasting and destructive effect on domestic and international tourism,” he said.
The Prime Minister said travel restrictions has affected hotels, local accommodation sites, restaurants and other activities frequented by locals as well as international tourists alike.
“Despite these setbacks the Ministry of Culture and Tourism are continuing close dialogue with our tourism operators on the way forward,” he said.