Chamber’s petition late: Arua

Business

By MARK HAIHUIE
THE petition by the Milne Bay Chamber of Commerce and Industry against the formation of the Economic Facilitation Committee is unwarranted, according to an official.
Milne Bay provincial legal officer Mea Arua told The National that opportunities had been provided in the lead-up to the creation of the committee for objections but the chamber was silent.
The proposal for the committee had been around for about a decade until it was passed as a legalisation recently.
“The chamber did not represent businesses during this process, he said.
He said the chamber had been given the opportunity to air its views but did not attend consultative meetings.
“This economic facilitation committee has been in the making for the past decade,” Arua said.
“This committee was not able to function because it was just part of the EEZ (exclusive economic zone) policy but there was no legal basis for it.
“Now that a law has been passed, they established that committee recently. The administration and the division of commerce have always given the opportunity to the business community through the chamber over the years.
“It is important that they contribute as well to laws that will affect them, but they haven’t been attending. So when the law got passed allowing the committee to fully function, they got shocked.
“They only have themselves to blame because they were not there for the consultative meetings when the issues were supposed to be raised.”

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