Proposed craft market poised to bring multiple benefits

Solomon Islands new craft market Centre conceptual design. Photo: Director of Culture, Dennis Marita

The Government’s plan to build a Craft Market Center in Honiara will bring multiple benefits to the country.

Early this week, Government officials from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade met with donor partners in Honiara to discuss the proposal.

The information session was geared towards fostering partnerships with donors to explore opportunities for involvement in the project to support a formal business framework for the growth of the local arts and cultural industry.

Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Andrew Nihopara said prospects for tourism to thrive on the country’s cultural industry is huge and will continue to increase.

“There are increasing opportunities with the cruise ship sector – as frequency of visits is anticipated to increase over the next two years,” Mr Nihopara said.  

While the economic prospects of the cultural industry will continue to gain momentum with more business opportunities, Mr Nihopara said the social prospect where people will further engage in the protection and promotion of tangible and intangible cultural heritage will also continue to grow.

At the business level, this infrastructure is vital to support the current engagement in businesses by women groups, youth groups, communities and individuals to have a proper facility and space to conduct business.  

At the national level, this Facility will enhance and support the country’s national capacity to host national, regional and international events that promote cultural exchanges, exhibitions and to showcase cultural creativity.  

“Having a permanent structure that supports events will also ensure that events are hosted on a regular basis with minimal budget as there will be no need to continue erecting costly temporary structures,” Mr Nihopara said.

The Government is giving an opportunity for donors to be part of this development project to establish a national platform for people’s social interface, economic interaction and cultural exchange of the country’s unique and creative cultures with international visitors.  

This infrastructure development will enhance Solomon Islanders participation in a sustainable economic engagement at the micro-economic level.  

The Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade are taking the leading role in the dialogue process with donors and other key Government Ministries together with local tourism operators.

Source: Gov’t Communication Unit