PRIME Minister Manasseh Sogavare has announced that the National Cabinet has lifted the suspension on incoming international flights as part of the measures to slowly reopen our borders.
Speaking during his nationwide address today, the Prime Minister emphasized that the lifting of suspensions means, the Oversight Committee can now schedule incoming flights to the country.
“It does not mean that any person can travel from any country at any time they wish to enter Solomon Islands. No, that is not the case,” he said.
However, he said only the people approved through the Oversight Committee’s ‘border reopening subcommittee’ will be allowed to enter the country.
The Prime Minister said the Oversight Committee is currently compiling a schedule of flights through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, covering the period from November 2021 to January 2022.
Once finalized, he said it will be published so that approved travelers can have confirmed travel dates.
“I also advise all foreign nationals holding letters issued from Immigration stating you can enter the country, that those letters mean you have fulfilled the requirements by immigration to enter the country. However, during the period of the State of Public Emergency only those approved through the Oversight Committee and its ‘border reopening subcommittee’ will be allowed to enter the country,” he said.
Prime Minister Sogavare said work towards the reopening of our borders is well underway with the establishment of the ‘Border Reopening Subcommittee’.
The Prime Minister said the subcommittee has been tasked to undertake the analysis and recommend options to be considered by Cabinet.
Prime Minister Sogavare said the Subcommittee is expected to submit its report to the Oversight Committee for presentation to the Cabinet for its deliberation and decision on a target date to reopen our international borders.
“Solomon Islands cannot stay locked up from the rest of the world forever,” he said.