By STEPHANIE ELIZAH
PAPUA New Guinea on Wednesday presented a cheque for K3 million to Solomon Islands for payment of tuition fees for Solomon Island students currently studying in various tertiary institutions in PNG.
The K3 million education grant assistance for 2010 academic year is part of K23 million pledged by the PNG government in 2006 to provide assistance in sponsorship and training of selected Solomon Islands students to PNG.
Foreign Affairs and Trade acting secretary Lucy Bogari, in presenting the cheque, said the PNG government was pleased to extend this assistance to its closest neighbour.
“The current assistance to Solomon Islands is a testimony to the PNG government’s commitment in building strong and lasting ties with our Melanesian partner. We hope that through assisting in developing the students, we contribute to the betterment of livelihood in Solomon Islands,” Bogari said.
Solomon Islands High Commissioner Bernard Bata’anisia, in accepting the cheque, said the money would go towards the tuition fees, boarding and allowances for the Solomon Islands government sponsored students in PNG.
“I pay tribute to PNG for the partnership forged in education and training between our two countries,” Bata’anisia said.
“Solomon Islands is a young and developing country and such training of its human resources is a top priority for our government.
“The contribution of the people of PNG in our endeavours is timely and appreciated by the people of Solomon Islands. Thank you PNG for this valuable assistance,” he said.
According to Bata’anisia, the funding assistance represented the final draw down of the education grant assistance provided to the Solomon Islands government.