SIG and PNG sign landmark aviation agreement

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Honourable Peter Shanel, Solomon Islands Minister for Communication and Aviation during the SI 39th Independence Anniversary at USP’s Laucala Campus.

(OPMC): THE Ministry of Communication and Aviation and Papua New Guinea National Airports Corporation (NAC) has signed a landmark training agreement recently.

A training agreement was signed in Honiara on 2nd July 2018 by the Papua New Guinea Chief Executive Office NAC Richard Yopo and the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Communication and Aviation Moses Virivolomo.

The signing marks another milestone in continuing cooperation between the two Melanesian countries in Civil Aviation and an achievement that can be replicated in the islands states in our region.

The PNG Minister for Civil Aviation Hon Alfred Manase led a delegation to Honiara that comprised of the Civil Aviation Authority PNG, two certified ICAO Fire and Rescue trainers, Board members and senior staff of NAC to witness the signing.

“I stress the need for stronger cooperation; partnerships and engagement between our two countries to continuously improve aviation safety between our two countries,” Hon Manase said.

The Solomon Islands Minister for Communication and Aviation Hon Peter Shanel Agovaka welcomed the PNG delegation and thanked the team from NAC and MCA for the work done in realizing this training assistance agreement.

“This agreement will pave the way for capacity building in the MCA and maintain compliance in Solomon Islands Aviation Sector,” Hon Agovaka said.

There are various programs, objectives and targets currently being pursued under the ICAO “No Country Left Behind’ initiative to assist states in capacity building in order for states to derive maximum social economic benefits from aviation.

This initiative needs ICAO member states to improve on compliance and main global Standards and Recommended Practices.

However, in small island states like Solomon Islands, it needs support and PNG through NAC will provide training and help establish the Solomon Islands Airport Corporation Limited (SIACL) to manage airports in Solomon Islands.

Implementation of the signed agreement was effected immediately when NAC handed over to the Ministry of Communication & Aviation, ICAO Certified Trainers to train and assess new recruits for the Munda Airport Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting Service.

The 4 weeks training will see new recruits trained in the basic aviation rescue firefighting training.

Training will incorporate theory and practical demonstration and ratings to be able to deploy in any given airport fire and rescue situations.

PNG Minister for Civil Aviation and CEO of NAC also offered to continue to assist MCA and the newly established SIACL training opportunities and exchanges.

“We are prepared to assist to develop the Solomon Islands aviation sector,” he said.