BY JOHN HOUANIHAU
HONOURABLE Premier of Guadalcanal Province, Francis Sade has hailed the recent official partnership signing of the 4-year multi-million dollar Tina Hydro Development Project initiative.
The SBD1.5 billion and 15 Mega Watt renewable energy project on Tina River, Central Guadalcanal is a gift to the Solomon Islands and the people of Guadalcanal. The project aims to provide 65% of electricity demand for the capital Honiara by the online date of 2022 and also to help reduce pollution and generate huge employment opportunities in the region of Guadalcanal.
The official signing agreement signifies the collaborative partnership between the Ministry of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification and Solomon Power. This clean energy project will help in reducing pollution and generating huge employment opportunities in the region.”
Premier Sade said he is deeply honored to witness the official signing ceremony of the dignified collaboration between the country’s National Government and its leading State-Owned Enterprise (SOE) – Solomon Power.
“At this onset, let me on behalf of my Executive Government and the people of Guadalcanal (from the land of providence) congratulate the Ministry of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification and Solomon Power for this magnificent milestone,” the Premier said.
“It is not too often we witness such another important undertaking in the energy sector especially for clean and renewable energy in our country. Therefore my Government for inclusive change and sustainable development is not only humble but also thrilled to be part of such mammoth development since 2019,’’ said Premier Sade.
He added that his government also understands that positive developments are direct and indirect to not only the people in the Solomon Islands but the indigenous people of Guadalcanal province mostly in the Central Guadalcanal area which aligns with this sustainable development.
“For example, the opportunities range from both not limited to employment opportunities, communities’ initiatives, small-micro-finance programs, education opportunities, and conservation and preservation opportunities, especially in the catchment areas.
“Needless to mention the spill-off effects of this Tina Hydro Development Project would also propel the several policy objectives 2019-2023 strategy of my Government for Inclusive Change and Sustainable Development (GICSD),’’ he said.
The project has an estimated lifespan of 50 years. It will lower the cost of electricity supply, and diversify generation capacity towards clean, renewable sources.
He further added that it is due to this understanding that we were determined to support the National Government project with a $6 million dollars’ Tina Hydro Development Project exemption waiver in 2019.
“I have to admit that this was a difficult choice that my Executives Government had to make, especially when inherit $20million plus dollars right at the beginning of our four-year-long journey.
“We definitely knew that we will face a lot of backlashes for this, however, my Executive Government has envisioned that the positive benefits of the Tina Hydro Development Project will definitely outweigh the obstacles.
“Therefore, despite how small it is compared to the 20plus major development partners is our genuine contribution to this national project and I hope that as the premier of GP this little contribution is cherished,’’ Sade told attendees of the event.
He later reminded International Donor Partners, NGOs, SOEs, and the National Government that his current Executive Government will continue to support such sustainable developments on Guadalcanal as long as it benefits the collective wishes of the people.
“My Executive understands the much-needed objectives to increase the accessibility of reliable electricity supply to reach the renewable energy to 50% when the Tina hydro development project is completed.
“This Tina Hydro Development Project epitomizes such developments that Guadalcanal Province is keen to have,” he added.
Tina Hydro Power Limited has engaged the world’s leading engineering firm, Hyundai Engineering Company (HEC) from South Korea, as the Engineering, Procurement, and Construction Contractor for implementing the Project.